Prof. Skeem's publication on Psychopathic Personality is highlighted in Psychology Today's article "What We Get Wrong About Psychopaths" . The article discusses several misconceptions about psychopathy as outlined by Prof Skeem's research on psychopathy, violence and personality traits: "Psychopathy cannot be equated with extreme violence or serial killing. In fact, psychopaths do not appear different in kind from other people, or inalterably dangerous.”

Dr. Jennifer Skeem was awarded the Edwin I. Megargee Scientist-Practitioner Award by the International Association for Correctional and Forensic Psychology.  The award will be presented in September 2018 at the annual conference of the International Community Corrections Association in San Antonio, Texas.

Lab members presented six papers on a variety of topics at this year’s American Psychology Association’s (APA) 2018 Convention in San Francisco, California on August 10 - 12.

    Many people involved in the justice system and people with serious mental illness are required to participate in psychosocial treatment, whether they want it or not. With these clients, case managers, probation officers, and other providers are tasked with both promoting client recovery (a helping, therapeutic role) and protecting community safety (a controlling, surveillance role). In this paper, which was recently accepted into Psychological Assessment, Dr. Perman Gochyyev and Dr. Jennifer Skeem developed and validated a short form of the Dual-Relationship Inventory (DRI-R) —the 9-item DRI-SF—by applying multidimensional item response theory methods to four datasets.

    Dr. Jennifer Skeem was featured in a rivetting Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio documentary on psychopathy titled "Creating Conscience, Part 2: A history of treating the psychopath". Perceptions of psychopaths and their personalities are explored through multiple perspectives, including those that treat and research psychopathic behavior.  

    Today's policymakers are interested in alternatives to incarceration for people with mental illness that are both evidence-based and cost-effective. Specialty mental health probation has been shown to reduce recidivism (e.g. Skeem et al., 2017). An article recently published in the journal Psychiatric Services details this study, illustrating how well-implemented specialty probation yields substantial savings, and should be considered in current justice reform efforts for people with mental illness.  

    Reuters Health covers an article highlighting Prof. Skeem's publication on Specialty Probation.  The article covers an interview with Prof. Skeem, which underlines key concepts on the success of special mental health probation:  “The rules are clear. There’s fairness, there’s firmness in implementing the rules and then caring. It helps keep people out of trouble with the law."

    Probation has become a cornerstone of efforts to reduce mass incarceration. Although understudied, specialty probation could improve outcomes for the overrepresented group of people with mental illness. An article by Jennifer Skeem, Ph.D., Sarah Manchak, Ph.D., and Lina Montoya B.S. was recently accepted for publication in JAMA Psychiatry. Study findings indicate that well-implemented specialty probation for justice-involved people with mental illness appear effective in reducing general recidivism, compared to traditional probation. Reform efforts for people with mental illness could leverage probation—a ubiquitous and revitalized node of the justice system. 

    Congratulations to lab manager, Sara Ellis, for receiving the Haas Scholar grant to conduct her Psychology undergraduate Honor's Thesis project on "Reducing Institutional Violence: Environmental Risk Factors in Psychiatric Hospitals".   She has also received the Cal Alumni Association Leadership Award, which recognizes students at UC Berkeley who demonstrate innovative, initiative-driven leadership impacting their academic, work, or community environments. 

    Professor Skeem moderated a panel that focused on risk assessment at the Inclusive Al Symposium on May 10, 2017. This panel discussed the promise and perils of using risk assessment instruments and other ‘algorithms’ and risk assessment to inform policing and criminal justice decisions.  Panelists included Mark Bergstrom, Chris White, Jessica Saunders and Sharad Goel.  See the presentations and discussion here!