A trial scheme that has helped reduce youth crime by 20% could be extended to bring down the number of offences committed by women.
Police, courts, education and social services have been working together in Aberdeen to nip youth crime in the bud by tackling minor offences.
The so-called "whole system approach" saw the youth crime rate in Aberdeen fall from 5875 in 2008-09 to 4623 in 2010-11, a drop of 20%.
The number of youths committing crimes has gone down by 23% since 2006-07, while the number of youngsters referred to the children's reporter because of offences has dropped by 48% in the last two years.
Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill said he hoped the method could be used nationwide to reduce offending by women.
He said the scheme had helped cut bureaucracy and make the justice system more efficient, and rolling it out nationwide was a "key priority" for the government.
The average time taken by the the children's hearing system to reach a disposal decision is now 28 days. In 2009-10 cases took between 72 to 148 days to conclude.
Mr MacAskill said: "Whole systems is exactly the direction of travel we want to take on female offenders, with police, courts, education and social services working together to address all aspects of problem behaviour.
"This has worked with youngsters, we can make it work with women.
"Cutting youth crime is a key priority for this government and we want to nip bad behaviour in the bud now before it becomes a major problem later. Early intervention is the most effective way to do this."
The number of women in prison has more than doubled over the last decade and Cornton Vale in Stirling, Scotland's only all-female prison, has been the focus of sustained criticism in recent years.
A report by former Lord Advocate Dame Elish Angiolini QC this week called for the jail to be demolished and replaced by specialist units.