Setting up an official register of sex offenders, as happens in the US and Britain, does not reduce the re-offending rate, a report for the Dutch justice ministry said on Monday.
Nor is there any evidence that updating locals on the presence of sex offenders stops further crimes, the report says.
In fact, notifying locals that someone convicted of sex crimes has moved to their neighbourhood can have a negative effect by isolating the offender from society. This could make it more likely that he will re-offend, the report says.
The report coincides with an experiment currently under way in 50 local authority areas in the Netherlands. The experiment, based on British practices, involves informing police and mayors when sex offenders are released from jail and settle in their locality.
Sex offenders in the Netherlands can be kept under official supervision for up to nine years.
If the experiment proves successful, it will be expanded nationwide.