The Council of Europe has been awarded today the 2019 International Corrections and Prisons Association (ICPA) President's Award as a recognition for the collection and collation of the Council of Europe Annual Penal Statistics (SPACE).
The award was received by Ilina Taneva, Deputy Head of the Criminal Law Division of the Council of Europe, and by Professor Marcelo Aebi, who leads the SPACE research team from the University of Lausanne, at a ceremony held during the 21st ICPA AGM and Conference “Strengthening Our Correctional Cornerstones: Rights, Dignity, Safety and Support” (Buenos Aires, 27 October ‑ 1 November 2019).
Data related to prisons are collected since 1983 (SPACE I) and data related to non‑custodial sanctions and measures (SPACE II) are collected since 1992. The data are provided by an extensive network of national correspondents working in the prison and probation services of the 47 Council of Europe member States. These data are collected, verified and analysed for the Council of Europe by a team of experts from the University of Lausanne.
SPACE is an important world‑wide used source of comparative information and data. These data play a key role in enabling public authorities to make informed policy decisions in the penal field.
The European Union and the Council of Europe are currently co‑funding a project which aims at supporting and widening the network of national correspondents and at further developing and extending the analysis and thematic research based on the SPACE statistics (trends of imprisonment, types of prison populations, length of sentences, prison capacities, staffing, release policies, types of non‑custodial sanctions and measures and trends in their use). The objective is also to link SPACE statistics to the criminal justice statistics and the related research and analyses in order to help the national authorities and the professionals in undertaking any necessary reform of their criminal and penal policies and practices.