Evidence based policing

ESR, New Zealand Police and the University of Waikato have joined forces to establish a world-class research centre to help better inform Police in their work to prevent crime and protect the public.

Evidence based policing ensures Police strategy, operations and tactics are based on the best possible evidence (information, crime science and problem-solving methods) to guide and inform staff, providing better outcomes for the Police, public and the Government.

The group works together on Police research projects at the centre in Central Wellington.

Commissioner of Police Mike Bush commented that the work is a valuable resource for Police and help them improve trust and confidence with the public. “Evidence will help us understand what works, what counts and what matters." Initial research projects are focussed on key priorities for Police including victims, Māori offending and road policing.

“Police are an important and integral part of the community and there can be no doubt policing in the 21st century is challenging. There are the challenges of meeting political and community demands and expectations, and the need to be agile in responding to new priorities in an environment of significant change. The challenges are unlikely to lessen anytime soon,” said ESR Chief Executive, Keith McLea at the opening of the centre.

“Like all organisations the New Zealand Police must use resources wisely and with due diligence in ways that add value to the citizenry, organisation and government. These are all factors making a case for enlisting evidence to guide decision making. This is why there is a global movement within police organisations to invest in research and translate research findings into practical actionable strategies.”