Simulating Correctional Disturbances: The Application of Organization Control Theories to Correctional Organizations via Computer Simulation

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Inmate group behavior is a complex phenomenon that many researchers have attempted to understand. Most of the individual theories applied to this issue have had limited success. This work uses computer simulation to apply a complex theory of organizational control to the issue of inmate group behavior that incorporates all the major theoretical components found in the individual theories. The complete theory is first presented and then basic simulation results are discussed. The findings show that the simulated theory produced results that are empirically realistic. The control processes used by prisons generally produce compliance from inmates but these same control processes result in episodic periods of negative inmate group behavior. These initial results point to the promise of computer simulation for understanding complex control issues in ways simpler theories cannot.

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