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California Critical Care during COVID-19

As the number of Californians testing positive for the coronavirus rises, there is growing concern about available critical care resources and how they are distributed across the state.

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What’s Next for California’s Public Pensions?

By Patrick Murphy, Radhika Mehlotra

A recent California Supreme Court ruling upheld a major pension reform law from 2013, but how much flexibility will policymakers have in modifying pension agreements?

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What Motivates People to Use Less Water?

By Lori Pottinger

During droughts, households can be inundated by messages to use less water. We talked to Katrina Jessoe about what motivates people to conserve.

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Pretrial Risk and Cash Bail

By Justin Goss

Reforming the bail system could save funds and free up scarce jail beds—even while maintaining public safety.

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A Water Sector Energy Hog

By Alvar Escriva-Bou

When we use water, we’re also using energy—sometimes a lot. Where does it all go, and how can we best save both water and energy?


Alternatives to Incarceration in California

By Ryken Grattet, Brandon Martin

Three-plus years after implementing a major realignment of its public safety systems, California continues to face pressure to reduce both its prison and jail populations. California relied on some alternatives to custody-based punishment before realignment but it has been expanding its use of others. Current research on the effects of incarceration and its alternatives offers a general endorsement of the idea that increasing reliance on community-based alternatives is not likely to result in large increases in crime and recidivism. The evidence suggests that the effectiveness of both incarceration and community-based supervision depends on a number of factors, including the rate of incarceration in a given community, the offender characteristics, and the nature of the response to violations during and after supervision. Finally, intensive data collection on county implementation efforts can help the state identify the community-based strategies that produce the best outcomes.

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