Since 2003, Praxis has been providing training and technical assistance (TA) to communities to analyze institutional responses to violence against women through the use of institutional analysis, community assessment, best practice assessment and Safety and Accountability Audits.
Praxis has developed methods for institutional analysis and systems change work rooted in the field of sociology called institutional ethnography. Our tools provide ways for activists and representatives from institutions that process “cases” to move toward approaches that alter the ongoing case processing routines that ultimately shape case outcomes.
Institutional Analysis is a method of examining how complex institutions and systems operate in ways that either meet people’s needs or produce negative outcomes for the people they are dealing with. Institutional Analysis discovers how workers are organized and coordinated, directly and indirectly, to approach and act on cases in specific ways.
Institutional Analysis can be used to discover information about: (1) people’s actual lived experience with the ways in which intervention is meeting or not meeting their needs; (2) organization and function of current practice; (3) contrasts between the stated official process and the actual process; (4) problems that require a shift in policy and practice; (5) whether recommended policies and protocols have been implemented as intended; (6) where harmful unintended consequences and disparity of impact might exist in a system or institution’s response; and (7) impact of changes in policy and practice.
The tools, utilized extensively in the criminal and civil justice systems, supervised visitation, and child protective services to assess response to violence against women, avoid pointing fingers of blame at individuals for failing to protect victims. Practitioners and advocates work side by side to analyze how systems organize the day-to-day routines of individual practitioners to either centralize or marginalize attention to victim safety and well-being and offender accountability.Show More
The following tools developed by Praxis reveal systemic problems and produce recommendations for institutional change:
The Center for the Study of Social Policy has adapted the Praxis method of institutional analysis to examining disparity in foster care placements for African American children.
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