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Police Research in the United States and the Role of the National Institute of Justice (From Police and the Community: Contributions Concerning the Relationship Between Police and the Community and Concerning Community Policing, P 7-18, 1990, Thomas Feltes and Erich Rebscher, eds.)

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 1990
12 pages
The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is a research unit of the Department of Justice and has had a crucial role in the increase of criminological research projects in the United States in the 1980's.
This increase resulted from several factors: the high cost of crime which indicated the need to monitor police effectiveness; increased collaboration between criminal justice professionals and research organizations; and the recognition that research has an important impact on practical police work. Founded by Congress in 1968, NIJ plans research projects in conjunction with police organizations, private research organizations, and academic institutions and disseminates crime information to the community. Recent NIJ research on police work has led to significant results and changes. For example, research on the effectiveness of traditional police strategies found that contrary to police assumptions, police patrols at irregular intervals do not deter crime. Similarly, a rapid police response to calls for help has much less effect on arrests and ascertaining witnesses than formerly believed. Research has also helped develop new police strategies including community policing and problem-oriented approaches which are particularly useful in crime prevention. Current NIJ research focuses on drug prevention, police technology, and an AIDS information system. 11 references

Date Published: January 1, 1990