Law Enforcement and Research Partnerships
Cory Haberman, Assistant Professor, University of Cincinnati, discusses his work as an NIJ LEADS Academic and the value of having training researchers working directly with law enforcement agencies.
Why I wanted to be a part of the LEADS program because my research is in collaboration with police departments. And so I was hoping to bring some of the skills and the training that I’ve had to help some of the LEADS scholars be able to conduct their own research in a rigorous manner.
So there’s a tremendous value of having trained researchers inside police departments. I think the reality is that science is the future of policing. In the past, we know that police agencies have done things that either have not worked or caused harm. Those could’ve been very well-intended programs but of course then they haven’t achieved their objectives. And so by having trained staff within agencies to both be able to consume research as well as conduct research, it just provides kind of endless opportunities for police agencies to continue to be more effective and more efficient in all of the programs and strategies.
So one of the things I think is key when researchers are working with agencies is directly working with police officers and commanders. So working with everybody across all ranks and making sure that everybody understands the program that you’re trying to implement and why you’re doing what you’re asking them to do and so on, and so making sure that it’s not just a complete top-down program as opposed to a bottom-up program as well, so really both at the same time.
Well, I’d say the LEADS Program is probably one of the most important programs out there in policing. Traditionally, there aren’t resources available to have, you know, agency staff interacting with researchers maybe outside of a kind of a university setting. And so providing resources and having the opportunity for both practitioners and academics to interact with each other, pretty vital for the future of policing and continuing kind of the evidence-based policing movement that we see in the country.
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