Economic evaluation of drug court: Methodology, results, and policy implications

T. K. Logan, William H. Hoyt, Kathryn E. McCollister, Michael T. French, Carl Leukefeld, Lisa Minton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to conduct a cost-benefit analysis of three Drug Court programs in Kentucky for two groups of Drug Court participants: program graduates and program terminators. The economic benefits of the Drug Court programs were estimated relative to a comparison group of individuals who were assessed for the Drug Court programs, but did not enter the programs. This study highlights important factors in estimating the costs and the economic benefits of a Drug Court program. Results indicated that, particularly for graduates, Drug Court involvement was associated with reductions in incarceration, mental health services, and legal costs, as well as increases in earnings and child support payments. Net benefits and benefit-cost ratios for each program are presented and policy implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)381-396
Number of pages16
JournalEvaluation and Program Planning
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Cost-benefit analysis
  • Drug court
  • Economic evaluation
  • Evaluation
  • Recidivism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Strategy and Management
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science


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