Antisocial and criminal behaviour involving children and young people have been a cause of heightened public concern in England and Wales for more than a quarter of a century.
It has been the subject of numerous policy papers, research studies and academic assessments as well as extensive newspaper, radio and television coverage.
This has set the context for an ever expanding volume of legislation seeking to amend and improve society's official response. Yet despite a massive injection of resources into the youth justice system the results achieved have been unimpressive, reoffending remains a persistent problem and the general public appears to have little confidence in the youth justice system.
The time is ripe therefore for a new look at the problem of youth offending and government and society's response to this.
This book accompanies the Report of the Independent Commission on Youth Crime and Antisocial Behaviour, published 2010.
In it leading authorities in the field, from a variety of different disciplines, review youth crime and different responses to it, focussing particularly on England and Wales but also analysing for comparative purposes the nature of responses in other parts of the world, especially Canada.
It will be essential reading for practitioners, policy makers, students and others with an interest in addressing one of today's most intractable social problems.