Dennis Adams, 29, was expected back yesterday at HMP Castle Huntly, near Dundee, but did not appear.
Adams, jailed for six years in February 2009 for assault to severe injury and robbery, had been granted temporary release to his home town of Aberdeen. He was transferred to the open estate in October.
Officers at Tayside Police are appealing for information to help trace the absconder.
He is described as being 6ft with brown hair and blue eyes.
He has tattoos on both arms, a series of numbers on his left arm and what police describe as a "Nirvana face" on his right arm.
Anyone who has seen Adams or who knows where he is being asked to call Tayside Police on 101.