© 2015 CSIC. This paper analyzes the effects of family contacts during incarceration on recidivism and explores the mechanisms that relate these factors. A two-wave mixed method design is applied on a sample of men given prison sentences for ordinary acquisitive crimes in the province of Barcelona. The analysis shows that both the stronger family ties (with parents and partners) and the weaker ones (with other family members) may have a significant effect on the desistance process, through the mechanism of bonding (in relation to strong ties) or social support (in relation to weak ties). However, the results also show the limitations of bonding when not coupled with the instrumental support needed for a successful reentry. Additionally to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis has been conducted to detail explanatory mechanisms, taking also into account negative cases.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere002
JournalRevista Internacional de Sociologia
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Delinquency
  • Desistance
  • Family
  • Mixed methods
  • Prison


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