Christmas reading list 2019

Last year I posted my Christmas reading list and I thought it could be a nice tradition to do the same this year. I had a way more ambitious list back then, partly because I could take a longer holiday and also, there were not as many projects/grant applications that I had to work on. This year I have more modest goals, one series of papers and a book.

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‘Police in Schools’ preliminary findings

As I mentioned in an earlier post back in September, I am the lead researcher on the ‘Police in Schools’ project (also see my post from a couple of weeks back on the police training that I attended). The data collection is still ongoing, but I produced a short report summarising the preliminary findings of the research (using non-technical language) for the funders of the project.

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‘Police in the classroom’ training at Kent Police

I spent Thursday and Friday at Kent Police as an observer of the ‘Police in the classroom’ training. This training is primarily for PCSOs (Police Community Support Officers) or other police personnel who engage with schools (in some regions they could be school police officers). These trainings are funded by the PSHE Association and the NPCC, I have discussed the surrounding research project in more detail in another post. I have also added a couple of pictures about Kent Police to the post below.

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Presentation at the Annual Meeting of the ASC 2.

My second presentation on distinguishing between the consensual and coercive aspects of duty to obey using natural effects models was much better attended than the first one. You can find the presentation of our work with Jon Jackson, Ben Bradford, and Sarah MacQueen (and the extra slides on the methodology) after the page break.

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Presentation at the Annual Meeting of the ASC 1.

This year the Annual Meeting of the American Society of Criminology took place in San Francisco. On Thursday I was asked to present in and chair the ‘Experiments in Policing and Sentencing’ session. I was discussing how block-randomised experiments should be assessed to ascertain that the average treatment effects are unbiased and interpretable. You can find my presentation after the page break. Next week I will also share my second presentation.

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Presentation at the Understanding Society’s Employment Workshop

As a continuation of our project on labour market non-compliance (see my previous post on our report), our research team successfully submitted an affiliated study application to the Understanding Society survey. This means that, subject to funding, we will be allowed to carry out a large-scale representative survey study on precarious workers in the UK with a respondent-driven sampling element as a methodological innovation. I had a chance to present our proposed research at the Understanding Society’s Employment Workshop. The full programme of the event and my presentation are available below.

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ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship

I was fortunate enough to be awarded a one-year ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship with the ‘industrial strategy steer’ award at the London School of Economics for my project titled ‘Using advanced data analytics to assess the spatial causal effects of policing policies and practices’ (I will start in this position on the 1st of October). My principal aim with this fellowship is to test and advance theoretical understanding of some core causal claims of the policing literature. Specifically, I will scrutinise neighbourhood-level and location-based police effects.

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Should there be police presence in schools?

The manifesto of the UK’s children’s commissioner has just been published, which called for police units to be added to schools. In the criminology community, several people called this out arguing that continued police presence in schools could foster the criminalisation of youthful escapades and mischief.

While I agree that teachers should not rely on Bobbies to enforce school regulation , a limited police presence could be beneficial to increase trust and boost cooperation. Or could it? In a recently started research project funded by the Physical Social Health and Economics (PSHE) Association and the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), this is what we try to figure out.

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Release of our final report on labour market non-compliance

Our final report on the advantages and disadvantages of various methodological approaches to examine and assess labour market non-compliance in the UK is available online from the following link (you can also download the pdf after the page break). It was an exciting opportunity to support this scoping project spearheaded by Ella Cockbain (UCL), and work together with Sam Scott (University of Gloucestershire) and Ben Bradford (UCL). We hope that we will have the chance to continue our work and would appreciate any feedback regarding the report.

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How People Judge Policing – Book review


We had the privilege to write a book review with Jon Jackson and Ben Bradford on Tank Waddington’s final book, co-authored with Kate Williams, Martin Wright, and Tim Newburn. There is no point for me to reiterate all the praise that we have given to this methodologically innovative and theoretically rich book (you can find our review here or on my open science account here). Let me say just this: if you are a policing scholar or practitioners interested in procedural justice or citizen perception of the police in general, you should get this book.