Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2016, $642,348)
Purpose of the Project: The 21st Century Policing Cross-Site Multi-Stakeholder Sentinel Event Review (SER) Project seeks to test and learn from the application of Sentinel Event Review methodology in three police departments in a cross-site evaluation over three years. The goal is to learn how SERs can be sustained by local law enforcement organizations when working in a multi-stakeholder environment.
Statement of the Problem: Law enforcement is facing a crisis of trust and legitimacy with the communities they serve. SERs provide a useful methodology to convene a range of key stakeholders including the community to review and learn from such experiences in a way that can build confidence in the criminal justice system and address underlying root causes across multiple systems.
Research Design and Methods: The Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation proposes to use a conceptual foundation (Systems Theory), and associated methodology (Dynamic Adaptation Process) to engage criminal justice stakeholders in assessment, capacity-building, and evidence-based strategy implementation, and a mixed-methods research design to examine the process and impacts of Sentinel Event Reviews on policing, process improvement, and sustainability. Each of the three police departments will form local SER teams as learning communities to design and carry out three SERs each. A cross-site learning team will be formed to maximize the sharing of knowledge and experience over the course of the project. Each local team will have a lead research partner and an SER technical coach to support the project.
Partners: PIRE will partner with 21st Century Policing, LLC to provide the coaching and capacity building to implement the SER methodology in collaboration with Prince Georges County PD, New Haven PD and Salt Lake City PD. SAI will provide the facilitation and consensus building tools to improve the likelihood of the SER process to produce recommendations that result in observable impacts.
Deliverables: Each local SER team shall conduct three SERs over the first two years of the project for a total of 9 SERs. Based on the data collection, analysis, case studies and key learnings from those nine reviews, the project will produce an SER for Law Enforcement and the Criminal Justice System Guidebook and Practitioner Took Kit. In addition, at least one academic peer-reviewed journal article will be produced to advance the work of SERs in the broader criminal justice context.
Permission to Share: PIRE gives NIJ permission to share this application with other potential funders. ca/ncf