Broken Windows Theory infuses many of the ideas and projects of the Center for Court Innovation. My overly simplified explanation of the theory goes like so: by changing the appearance of a neighborhood for the better (ex. repairing broken windows on buildings; painting over graffiti), you can reduce crime. An area that appears as if it is being looked after will cause crime-committing individuals to take it to a less well-tended area, or even rethink committing the crime at all. Broken Windows Theory is credited as one of the factors that helped transform New York City into a safer place in the 1980s. Recently, it's been appearing in the press in a negative light, tied to mass arrests for seemingly frivolous crimes. The head honcho of the Center For Court Innovation Greg Berman wrote about this duality on The Crime Report. You can read the article here, and pasted below.