Crime Science (Oct 2021)

A victim-centred cost–benefit analysis of a stalking prevention programme

  • Lisa Tompson,
  • Jyoti Belur,
  • Kritika Jerath

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 10, no. 1
pp. 1 – 11


Read online

Abstract Research suggests that stalking inflicts great psychological and financial costs on victims. Yet costs of victimisation are notoriously difficult to estimate and include as intangible costs in cost–benefit analysis. This study reports an innovative cost–benefit analysis that used focus groups with multi-agency teams to collect detailed data on operational resources used to manage stalking cases. This method is illustrated through the presentation of one case study. Best- and worst-case counterfactual scenarios were generated using the risk assessment scores and practitioner expertise. The findings suggest that intervening in high-risk stalking cases was cost-beneficial to the state in all the case studies we analysed (even if it incurs some institutional costs borne by the criminal justice system or health) and was often cost-beneficial to the victims too. We believe that this method might be useful in other fields where a victim- or client-centred approach is fundamental.