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Visions of Law Enforcement Technology in the Period 2024-2034: Report of the Law Enforcement Futuring Workshop

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2015
102 pages
This report presents the results of a workshop held in April 2014 as part of the National Institute of Justice's (NIJ's) and the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center's (NLECTC's) Priority Criminal Justice Needs Initiative, which is exploring future visions of law enforcement and the identification and prioritizing of needs in technology, policy, and practice based on these visions.
The workshop was a visioning exercise that explored the range of possible future law enforcement methods and operations that may be enabled by technological developments and applications over the next two decades. These same technological developments and applications may also spawn new criminal methods and behaviors. The workshop's objective was to explore a range of futures that could be desirable or undesirable from the perspective of the balance between law enforcement and criminal offenders. Discussions also included the identification of technology needs, including policy and practice related to technology, that would produce desirable futures, or avoid and. mitigate the effects of undesirable futures. Three research questions were posed in the workshop; First, how might technology and society evolve in the future? Second, how might the evolution of technology and society affect the use of technology by law enforcement? Third, what are the primary needs of law enforcement related to technology, including research and development, training, policy, and practice? The report acknowledges that although workshop participants were an experienced, knowledgeable group, the workshop outcomes were necessarily subjective assessments. Still, the workshop findings can be a useful guide for researchers, research sponsors, and law enforcement agencies projecting future needs. 9 figures, 13 tables, and a 112-item bibliography

Date Published: January 1, 2015