Tata Institute of Social Sciences
Mumbai | Tuljapur | Guwahati | Hyderabad


  • To sensitise and orient students to issues faced by diverse populations who come into contact with the criminal and allied systems, either as victims or as offenders/alleged officers as well as their families.
  • To understand the structures and processes involved in the criminal justice and allied systems from a rights based and rehabilitative perspective.
  • To learn to work with marginalised populations processed by the justice system that helps them negotiate structural and systemic barriers in accessing justice and public goods.
  • To learn attitudes, values and skills required in the field of criminal justice social work.
  • To learn to work with criminal justice actors and the system from an insider’s perspective, so as to develop insights that may address systemic and structural barriers in access to justice.
  • To work in the area of crime prevention, especially with respect to groups which get criminalised due to poverty and social exclusion.
  • To learn advocacy skills towards bringing about law and/or policy change in the field of criminal justice and allied systems.

The curriculum of fieldwork involves learning about potential areas for social work practice in the field of criminology, criminal and juvenile justice and corrections. It includes the application of social work in both primary and secondary justice delivery settings. While focusing on issues, specific skills of engaging with the system and advocacy work are facilitated. Students are trained to work with individuals, groups and communities towards crime prevention and rehabilitation. The fieldwork settings include a range of institutions like children’s institutions, women’s shelter homes, beggars’ homes to open settings like work with the homeless and de-notified tribes. It includes direct work in criminal justice settings like police stations, prisons, courts, legal service authorities and NGOs working on human rights issues, custodial justice, legal aid, community corrections and rehabilitation. Keeping the nature of the sector in mind, fieldwork is conducted in the concurrent mode for the third semester and in the block mode in the fourth semester, thus allowing students to optimize an orientation to the sector and then build on it towards developing a holistic understanding of Criminal Justice Social Work.

Field Action Projects :

TANDA (Towards Advocacy, Networking and Developmental Action)

  1. Creating a network of human resources and knowledge generation on the issues of NT-DNT community Advocacy with the administration for establishment of fundamental Rights
  2. Capacity Building and access to most required needs of the NT-DNT
  3. Capacity building of the CBOs/ NGOs/ Working with NT-DNT) Read More ]


  1. To demonstrate the need for social work intervention in the criminal justice system such as police stations, prisons, courts and institutions for women.
  2. To work towards the rehabilitation of persons coming out of or vulnerable to crime, sexual exploitation or destitution.
  3. To improve access to the legal rights of persons processed by the criminal justice system and to promote the use of the correctional laws to aid rehabilitation of vulnerable groups.
  4. To identify issues relevant to rehabilitation and attempt to address them at policy level.
  5. To increase awareness in government and society about issues related to rehabilitation of persons affected by crime, sexual exploitation or destitution.
  6. To generate knowledge in the field of social work, criminology and corrections through the analysis of field experience.) Read More ]

RCJJ (Resource Cell for Juvenile Justice)

  1. (Engage with the Juvenile Justice System (JJS) and work towards a child friendly implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act (with special focus on JCL).
  2. Work on issues related to rehabilitation and social integration of children into society.
  3. Build capacities of Juvenile Justice System functionaries towards their effective functioning in the system.
  4. Generate knowledge and information on various aspects related to children in the Juvenile Justice System.) Read More ]

Other Projects/ Engagements :

Criminal Justice Fellowship Program ( 2015 onwards)

The Criminal Justice Fellowship is a field intervention based fellowship offered to the alumni of the School of Law and the School of Social Work, TISS. The core idea behind this initiative has been to encourage new areas of work, especially where there is a dearth of trained human service professionals, and to demonstrate the scope and potential of working on critical issues. Read More ]


Consultations/ seminars held by the centres / faculty through field action projects :

  • State level Workshop for Probation Officers and Prison Officers on Implementation of the Probation of Offenders Act and Rehabilitation of Prisoners, held at YASHADA, Pune. Organised jointly by Prayas (TISS) and DWCD, GoM on March 2, 2016
  • One day State level Consultation on “Interpreting Crime Data on Children” Organized by High Court Juvenile Justice Committee, Bombay High Court in collaboration with Resource Cell for Juvenile Justice (FAP of Centre for Criminology and Justice) School of Social Work, Tata Institute of Social Sciences on 23rd July 2016.
  • Leadership Development Programme to Combat Human Trafficking in India, jointly organised by CCJ, SSW, TISS and Anyay Rahit Zindagi (ARZ), Goa in February, 2016, and February, 2017.
  • Vertical Interaction Course (VIC) is organised to build leadership capacities of senior IPS and Central Police Organisation officers. This is a 5 day training organised in TISS on a regular basis (twice every year) and is jointly organised by Bureau of Police Research and Development (Ministry of Home Affairs, GOI) CCJ, SSW and NCEHRE, SLRCG, TISS
  • Workshop for Metropolitan Magistrates on Children of Women Prisoners and Functioning of Jail Courts in Mumbai organised by Prayas (TISS) and Mumbai District Legal Services Authority in December 2015
  • Workshop on Coordination between NGOs working in Children's Aid Society organised jointly by IJM and CCJ, SSW, TISS in 2015
  • National Consultation of Methodology for Human Trafficking Study organised jointly by UNODC and UN Women in June 2015
  • Certifcate Course in Social Work For Prison Officers with APCA Vellore (every year)

Nature of field work agencies. Please give broad themes / profile of field work agencies :

Along with intensive specialized class instructions, students receive practical training in all phases of correctional work with adults, juveniles and children both within and outside institutions. The objective is to impart a comprehensive understanding of justice system (adult and juvenile) and correctional work to the students. It exposes students to the dimensions of the crime problem, explanations of the prevalence of various types of crime, and the various agencies and programs designed to prevent and reduce crime and delinquency. These agencies and settings include:

  1. Police stations, courts, prisons, women’s and children’s institutions, and beggars’ homes.
  2. Legal aid systems.
  3. Human Rights Commission, Women’s Commission, Minorities Commission.
  4. Community based projects with a focus on marginalized groups (like de-notified tribes) and crime prevention.
  5. Aftercare and rehabilitation of persons affected by crime / commercial sexual exploitation.

Public and Memorial Lectures organised by different centres :

  1. Kumarappa Reckless Memorial Lecture : The Kumarappa–Reckless Lecture was instituted in the memory of Dr. J. Kumarappa, a former Director of TISS and Dr. Walter C. Reckless, a renowned criminologist and former UN Expert on Correctional Administration, who was invited by Jawaharlal Nehru to India, to help frame the correctional policies in the country. Dr. Reckless was here in the Institute and worked with Dr. Kumarappa in the early 1950s. He was instrumental in organising the first national level training programme on correctional administration for prison and probation officers at TISS. Over the last three decades, the KR Lecture has been a medium to invite eminent personalities and experts from the field of criminology, criminal justice, human rights and corrections to draw attention to and share experiences of contemporary realities and challenges. Some of the past speakers have included jurists, police officers, prison officers, academicians and activists. This Lecture series is anchored by the Centre for Criminology and Justice (CCJ), School of Social Work (erstwhile Department of Criminology and Correctional Administration).
  2. Public Lecture Angela Davis Dec 2016

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