The Sentencing Academy is currently creating a series of Issues papers designed to provide state of the art summaries of policy, legal and research developments on key topics in the area of sentencing and parole. Papers will be authored by experts in the field and peer-reviewed by Sentencing Academy advisers and external experts. They will identify consensual findings as well as gaps in knowledge. In this way they will be of interest to policy-makers, researchers and special interest groups, among others. The focus is always upon sentencing in England and Wales, although where the literature is limited in this country the papers will provide insight from foreign jurisdictions. Each Issues paper will be updated periodically to reflect the latest developments and publications, and readers are encouraged to provide feedback to the Academy to assist in this process. We are also interested in receiving suggestions regarding future subjects to be covered. The first Issues papers should be published in summer 2020.