Sentencing Guidelines

The Robina Institute is the only research institute with expertise in all U.S. sentencing guidelines systems, which are standards designed to establish rational and consistent sentencing practices within a particular jurisdiction. Robina seeks to promote and improve state and federal sentencing guidelines systems by producing, collecting, and disseminating policy-relevant research about sentencing guidelines and their effects on public safety, correctional resources, and racial disparities. We also provide information and research on sentencing commissions, their function, and sentencing commissions’ role in developing and updating sentencing guidelines.


Though there are multiple jurisdictions with sentencing guidelines, each exists on what we refer to as the advisory to mandatory continuum, referring to the degree to which the guidelines are enforced within each jurisdiction and,…
Jurisdictions across the United States take varied approaches to figuring out appropriate sentences in criminal cases. Some jurisdictions have sentencing commissions to help guide policy decisions in these areas. And some also have…
Though the Sentencing Guidelines Resource Center highlights information for 26 jurisdictions, including the federal government, not all of these jurisdictions have sentencing guidelines. Neither do all of the jurisdictions have sentencing…