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Improving 21st Century Policing Through Priority Research: The IACP's National Law Enforcement Research Agenda

NCJ Number
Date Published
September 2008
32 pages
This is the first National Law Enforcement Research Agenda (NLERA), which is a list of priority research topics for law enforcement intended to promote research on these topics, to encourage police/researcher partnerships to conduct that research, and to ensure that research topic selection results in relevant policy that assists the law enforcement community.
In creating a NLERA that encompasses issues facing U.S. law enforcement, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) conducted a representative survey of 1,000 IACP members in order to identify the core research needs of the field. Survey results were used as the foundation for several subcommittee meetings of the IACP's Research Advisory Committee (RAC). Outreach to other major law enforcement organizations was conducted in order to determine their views on national research priorities, as well as how these organizations might support the NLERA once it is published. The NLERA also relied on an assessment of existing literature on research priorities in policing, including a literature survey and review by a designated RAC subcommittee. Other IACP surveys and polls were examined as well. Using all of the aforementioned information sources as baseline material, the RAC made final decisions on the core topics and research issues that would compose the NLERA. The NLERA organizes research issues around eight core topics: Leadership, Management and Administration, Training and Education, Systems Approaches, Technology, Response to Crime and Victimization, Emergency Preparedness, and emerging issues. For each of these core topics, the NLERA presents 15-20 research questions. These questions are not intended to be an exhaustive list of issues under the core topics. Rather, they are intended to promote thought and set an inquisitive and demanding tone for the NLERA. The IACP intends that NLERA readers will add their own research questions to the list.

Date Published: September 1, 2008