Law Enforcement Research Priorities

The National Institute of Justice has identified high-priority research, development and evaluation needs of law enforcement professionals. Those high-priority goals include:

  • Identify ways that police and law enforcement agencies can improve their effectiveness, efficiency and productivity.
  • Enhance officer safety while minimizing unnecessary risks to suspects and others.
  • Improve the ability of police organizations to collect, analyze, disseminate and utilize information effectively and to communicate reliably and securely.
  • Identify procedures, policies, technologies and basic knowledge that will maximize appropriate and lawful police actions.
  • Enhance local investigative resources by identifying and disseminating investigative best practices and by developing technologies and techniques that help locate suspects and establish guilt.
  • Develop knowledge and tools that helps prevent, deter or apprehend terrorists, including improving intelligence gathering, information sharing, risk assessment, target hardening, surveillance and detection.
  • Improve the tools and techniques available to first responders in a critical incident.
  • Evaluate and refine technologies, practices and procedures to minimize harm to persons, property and communities from terrorism.

These priorities inform decisions about the scope of future work and the dissemination of NIJ-sponsored knowledge and technologies. At the same time, NIJ maintains the flexibility to respond to emerging needs and to consider the merits of individual projects that may contribute to other worthwhile goals.

Date Created: March 12, 2009