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Juvenile justice – a wicked problem. Reflections on a strategic review of the NSW Juvenile Justice System

74 Leichhardt Street, Griffith ACT, Peter Murphy
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM 19 August 2010

Peter Murphy, Noetic Solutions

Presentation overview

A wicked problem is one that is hard to define, has a changing nature, can never be truly solved, and has a wide range of disparate stakeholder views. Addressing the challenges of juvenile justice neatly fits this definition. Complex stakeholder relationships and perspectives, limited authoritative information, extensive interdependencies between government agencies, and over-representation of Indigenous young people, all make it difficult to define the problem, let alone implement solutions.

Peter Murphy will review the challenges of delivering improved community safety and juvenile offender outcomes in Australia. The presentation will be based on the 2009 review he led into the NSW Juvenile Justice System, which included a review of effective practice from around the world. The report and its response was released by the NSW Government in April 2010 (

Peter will review juvenile justice practice in Australasia and around the world, and will focus on what works and does not work. He will explore the importance of whole-of-government and whole-of-community approaches to provide a context for discussion of strategies for improving both community and offender outcomes. The presentation will conclude with recommendations for reducing Indigenous involvement in the juvenile justice system.

The presenter

Peter Murphy

Peter Murphy is the CEO of Noetic Solutions, a management consultancy that specialises in the business of government ( and has offices in Canberra, Brisbane, Darwin and Washington DC.  Peter is a former army officer who served in a variety of positions in Australia, the Middle East and India. Since co-founding Noetic he has worked on a range of projects in the human services field of government.  This includes work for the Australian Government’s Department of Health and Ageing, Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, and the Child Support Agency.  He has also worked on a range of justice projects for the Australian Attorney-General’s Department and the Australian Federal Police. His qualifications include BA(Hons), MBA, MSc and GRAD CERT IS.