On November 7th and 8th, the Confederation of European Probation (CEP) organized its 10th CEP Directors General Conference. Annie Devos, the President of CEP, along with Dr. Susanne Mädrich from the Federal Ministry of Justice in Berlin and Prof. Dr. Kerstin von der Decken, the State Minister of Justice and Health in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, extended a warm welcome to 23 jurisdictions and 62 participants who gathered in Kiel for the conference.

The primary focus of the conference was the theme of “Dilemmas: Hard or Easy to Solve?”. In line with this theme, CEP was pleased to present a diverse array of speakers. Mr. Joachim Tein together with Prof. Dr. Christian Ghanem addressed the promotion of “good lives” through a discussion of the Schleswig-Holstein approach, while Prof. Nicola Carr from the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom, explored research approaches in probation, with a particular emphasis on factors beyond risk and the responsiveness of probation services. Subsequently, prof. Fergus McNeill took the opportunity to delve deeper into CEP Research development strategy that has been carried out by June 2024.

During the workshop sessions, participants engaged in brainstorming sessions led by Dr. Jane Dominey from the Institute of Criminology at the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, and Ms. Vesna Zelic Frencic from the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration of Croatia. The workshops covered topics such as caseload and workload. Another workshop, led by Mr. Joachim Tein, focused on the involvement of NGOs/CSOs and their potential role in strengthening probation in Germany.

The day concluded with a presentation from Ms. Annie Devos, CEP President, and Ms. Jana Spero, who discussed prospects for 2024 and 2025, along with strategies to navigate the future.

On the second day, Ms. Rita Lourenço and Mr. Gerry McNally explained the CoPPer Project and the role that volunteers can play in probation. Following their presentation, Ms. Maret Miljan, Ms. Pia Andersson and Ms. Marta Ferrer, introduced DialogueTrainer—an online training simulation for probation workers aimed at teaching essential correctional skills. They provided insights into the project’s results and the advantages of online learning. The final session featured a roundtable discussion with Nicola Carr – Ireland, Evelina Oueslati – Romania, Danijela Mrhar Prelic – Slovenia, Žilvinas Miliauskas – Lithuania and Domenico Arena – Italy on Education and Training, which included the Involvement of Volunteers as a component of professional development.

This concluded an enlightening conference with a summary and closing thoughts, marking the end of an incredible journey of learning and idea sharing. We express our gratitude to all the participants for their valuable contributions!

Media coverage

German journal “Forum Strafvollzug” of the “10th Conference of DGs in Probation”.



Photos and Interviews

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View the interviews here


Click here to read the report.



Should Probation Services Focus on Promoting Good Lives? Learning from the Schleswig-Holstein Approach, Mr. Joachim Tein, State Ministry of Justice, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany Prof. Dr. Christian Ghanem, Nuremberg Institute of Technology, Faculty for Social Sciences, Bavaria, Germany

Research Approaches in Probation: Beyond Risk Need and Responsivity – Prof. Nicola Carr, University of Nottingham, United Kingdom

CoPPer Project: Engaging Volunteers and the Community in the Offender’s Rehabilitation Journey – Ms. Rita Lourenço, Aproximar, Portugal and Mr. Gerry McNally, Probation Service, Ireland

Dialogue Trainer: Exploring the use of simulations for training and measurement within Probation – Ms. Maret Miljan, The Estonian Academy of Security Sciences, Estonia, Ms. Pia Andersson, The Prison and Probation Service, Finland and Ms. Marta Ferrer, The Justice Department of Catalonia, Spain


Caseload vs Workload: How much is too much? – Dr. Jane Dominey, Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom and Ms. Vesna Zelic Ferencic, Ministry of Justice and Public Administration, Croatia

Involvement of NGOs/CSOs: Enforcing Probation in Germany – Mr. Daniel Wolter, German Association for Social Work, Penal Law and Criminal Policy, Cologne/Northrhine Westphalia, Germany


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