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CONTEXTUAL THINKING ABOUT DIFFERENT SCENARIOS
Scenario A: Local pro capital punishment newspaper reporting on the milestone of the 500th execution.
Context: Curiosity and Purpose
The purpose of this report is to explore the justifications for capital punishment as one of the ways used by the criminal justice system in punishing convicts and providing justice to the victims of capital offenses. There are two curiosities that we identified as very fundamental in exploring this report.
Curiosity #1: What is the level of deterrence on capital offenses?
We were curious to look at how capital punishment helps in the deterrence of capital offenses. The level of deterrence could be measured by using data on the history of the occurrence of capital offenses to date. This curiosity originated from the realization that there were few cases of capital offenses reported on the media platforms within Texas.
Curiosity 2: What is the safety of the society from capital offenders?
We were curious on exploring the level of safety in the society when members of the public understand that the criminals have been removed from the general public and they will not come back to the society again. The safety of the general public can be determined from the dimensions of business activities during late hours, outdoor activities and the number of people using active means of transport. An increase in these dimensions reveal an increase in the level of safety that is experienced by the general public as a result of the removal of capital offenders from the society.
People: in this report, the stakeholders include the newspaper which is an independent newspaper with independent views and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice which will help in providing vital data. The audience of this report includes the general public who would like to understand how capital offense deters others from committing crime and how it ensures the safety of the society.
Frequency: This report will be a one off piece of work that will be produced on this single occasion of reporting on the 500th execution milestone.
Format: The intention of the newspaper was to create a report that would work through print media.
Vision: Purpose Map
In order to accomplish the purpose of the report, the news paper would be going for an explanatory experience to explain to the audience the justifications for capital punishment. This would be followed by an exhibitory experience where data would be displayed using bar charts and bubble charts to show the levels deterrence.
The visual work for this report can be depicted using bar graphs for the cases of capital offenses reported over the years. Bright colors like red and orange would be used for years when high cases were reported and this would indicate the level of danger or lack of safety in the society. Cool colors like blue and green would be used or the bars representing low cases of capital offenses. These colors would depict high levels of safety in the society and high levels of deterrence from crime.
Scenario B: Analyst staff at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice reporting to senior management about aspects of their operations.
Curiosity and Purpose
Curiosity: What motivates people to crime?
The analyst staff was curious to understand the reasons or motivations that led people into committing crimes. The analyst staff was curious to know why people committed crimes despite the fact that many people are aware of the consequences of the crimes they commit. In order to understand the various motives, the analyst team would look into the criminal records, the nature of crimes committed and the economic status of the criminals. The purpose of the report was to establish the motivating factors towards committing crime.
People: This report would be made for senior staff at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice as the primary audience.
Format: The content of the report will be constrained to a printable report to be submitted to the senior staff. Due to the confidentiality of the information and the risk of sabotaging the operations of the department, the report would not be made online to the public domain.
Data: The report would be based on annual crime data for the past one year. This data will make it possible for comparisons with other years to compare motivating factors of crime
Frequency: The report will be produced for a single annual occasion. The annual report will however use data from previous years for comparisons on motivating factors of crime.
Setting: The report is intended for consumption by senior staff members of the Texas Department of criminal Justice.
Format: The report will be made to work with a print format. Digital format was ruled out due to issues regarding the privacy and confidentiality of the information.
Task Size: The report would look at how economic factors of lack of employment, low levels of education and social factors of drug and substance abuse and poor neighborhoods motivated people towards committing crimes.
People: Criminal activity records and the criminals would be useful resources in giving insights on the motivating factors.
Technical: Collecting information from convicted criminals would require the formulation of a questionnaire or interview.
Vision: Purpose Map
The initial pathway for this report would be an exploration experience that will help to collect information from criminal records available at the department. This will be accompanied by interviews on convicted criminals in order to understand their motivation to committing their crimes. The second pathway would be to display the different motivating factors. This will be in the form of bubble charts displaying the biggest motivating factor to the lowest motivating factor.
The idea of a bubble chart would create a perfect mental image on the magnitude of the various motivating factors of crime in Texas. The number of convicted criminals will be represented by the bubble against the motivating factor on the x- axis. This will give a clear image in which factor has a high influence of the possibility of committing crimes.
Inspiration and influence
This report was inspired by the urge to reduce crime in Texas by understanding the motivations towards committing crime. Unless the motivations are rectified, people will continue to commit crimes in the society despite the stern laws and measures to stop crime.
Scenario C: A campaign group looking to influence the debate about the ending of capital punishment.
The purpose of the campaign group was to enlighten the general public and the criminal justice system by convincing them that capital punishment is not a solution to ending criminal activities.
Why do capital offenses occur even with capital punishment is still in place?
The group was curious about the reason as to why capital offenses took place in the society despite the use of capital punishment as a way of deterring potential criminals from committing such crimes. The dimensions of this curiosity could be measured from the annual reported cases of capital offenses in the Texas department of criminal justice despite the use of capital punishment.
Curiosity 2: The correctional ability of Capital punishment
The campaign group was also curious about understanding the ability of capital punishment to correct and reform offenders. The group was curious to know the efficiency of the capital punishment in reforming offenders which made the government to spend a lot of revenue in capital offense cases. The group was curious to know how executing offenders helped in any way towards correcting or reforming them.
People: The campaign targets the general public as its primary audience. The general public are the tax payers who pay tax to fund capital punishment investigations that are costly and with very little correctional efficiency or deterrence. The second audience would be the criminal justice system with the aim of enlightening the system on better solutions that could ensure public safety while also punishing offenders and reforming them.
Data: The group would use data on the executions that have taken place in Texas over the past 10 years. This data would reflect on the current situation of the criminal justice system in terms of the use of capital punishment and its deterrence impact on potential capital offenders. This data would also help the group in tracking the occurrence of capital offenses in Texas along with the executions.
Developer capabilities: This work will be limited to the use of print media in the form of posters as the means of reaching out to the audience.
Frequency: This will be a continuous campaign and this work will be used occasionally during group campaigns on ending capital punishment. The campaign shall be updating the project each year to capture new data regarding capital punishment.
Setting: This project will entail a prolonged degree of engagement and time with the general public and the criminal justice system in Texas.
The format of this project for the campaign will use posters which will allow a single view of the information on the executions and the cost of capital punishment offenses for comparisons.
To accomplish the purpose of the campaign group, the group sought to use one pathway given the limitation posed by target format. The group chose to use a high level tone explanatory experience in analyzing the executions of capital offenders while accompanied by exhibits in the form of graphs documenting the costs of capital punishment and executions. This would help to balance readability with clarity of the information.
The campaign group was thinking about creating a mental image using bar graphs. Three bar graphs for each year to represent the number of executions cost of the executions and the occurrence of capital offenses in the given year. This would enable for comparisons on the effectiveness of capital punishment as a means of deterrence against crime.
Influence and Inspiration
The campaign group was inspired by the need for an accurate system of criminal justice that not only administers justice but also reforms the offenders. Other states have abolished capital punishment because of the fact that it is costly, ineffective in deterrence and the fact that it does not give offenders a second chance to reform and become useful members in the society.
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