Community intervention and public policy in the prevention of antisocial behavior

J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2009 Jan;50(1-2):194-200. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2008.01985.x.


As academic clinical science moves to community intervention to achieve impact on population prevalence of antisocial behavior disorders, exciting potential is tempered by realistic caution. Three kinds of efforts are noted. First, individual evidence-based therapies are being implemented at scale. Difficulties in high-fidelity implementation are noted, and the unlikelihood of population impact is highlighted. Second, communities are receiving new resources to support individuals, although connecting community resources to highest-risk individuals is difficult. Third, community factors are being targeted for change through policy reform, with mixed results. As the field moves in this direction, the importance of adhering to principles of scientific rigor and empirical evidence is emphasized, to keep scientist-practitioners from overstepping their bounds.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder / epidemiology
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder / prevention & control
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder / therapy*
  • Child
  • Community Mental Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Community Mental Health Services / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Prevalence
  • Public Policy*
  • Socioeconomic Factors