Australian Institute of Criminology

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Research for police: who needs it?

Trends & issues in crime and criminal justice no. 211

Gloria Laycock
ISBN 0 642 24236 4 ISSN 0817-8542
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, June 2001


This Trends and Issues paper argues that the time is now right for a more intimate relationship between practitioners and researchers in general, and the police and researchers in particular. The growing emphasis on reducing crime - an outcome focus - highlights the need for an evidence base to crime reduction practices. Some examples are provided of what research might have to offer Australian police services in the area of police problem-solving. The paper also stresses the importance of being clear on the 'mechanism' through which any initiative might be expected to exert its effect. This is a particularly important point if the many new ideas being introduced are to be effectively evaluated and thus contribute to our growing knowledge base.