Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2004, $298,644)
Despite progress in police accountability and community focus, law enforcement organizations have yet to develop data systems to measure 'what matters' to the public and to involve the community most productively in problem solving efforts. This study seeks to fill this gap by extending the Chicago Police Department's inofmation technology system (CLEAR) to its community oriented policing program (CAPS). A randomized experiment will be conducted to determine whether a comprehensive web-based community survey and associated website, by collecting and distributin new information elements, can enhance the problem solving process, introduce greater accountability by police and citizens, increase community engagement, and strengthen police-community relations. The University of Illinois, in cooperation with the Chicago Police Department, will conduct an internet survey in sixty police beats, matched by social demographics, levels of poverty, crime rates, and CAPS beat meeting attendance rates. The survey will be administered to 600 CAPS participants and 1000 randomly sampled residents with internet access in the sixty beats. Respondents will be randomly assigned to receive survey feedback from CAPS participants, from community residents, and no feedback conditions. They will also be randomly assigned to receive training or no training in interpretation of survey findings. Surveys will also be administered to 100 police officers in these beats. Findings will measure changes in resident perceptions and attitudes about crime, the police, fear, and other related issues and will examine changes in problem solving capacities of CAPS participants.