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Evidence Based Policing (Consolidated)

March 2024


This unit must be completed to comply with the Policing Education Qualifications Framework (PEQF) on the National Detective Programme. This unit should take around 60 minutes to complete and does not need to be completed all at once. You can return to this unit as often as you like.

Evidence Based Policing


National Detective Programme

Evidence Based Policing

Determining valueOvercoming challenges & making things happenFunding and resourcesStakeholder engagementConflicting prioritiesWhere to startModels in EBPEvaluatingActivity: Ashview


National Detective Programme

Intro Activity: Sources of evidenceSources of evidenceForce facts data and figuresAcademia & ResourcesCollege of PolicingEBP resourcesStakeholders, values and conceptsActivity: Case studies


key ideas



Using the best available evidence to inform and challenge policing policies, practices and decisions.


Evidence Based Policing

Select all the images that you think are sources of Evidence Based Policing


Professional Experience and Judgment

Force facts, data and figures

Scientific/academic research findings

Stakeholders values and concepts



Force Data

Using data surrounding arrests, increases in criminal activity and changes within the community to inform evidence base.


Current interventions

Research current crime prevention initiatives and interventions currently in practice, both within and outside of force area.


Hot spots

Concentrated areas of crime within a force area.


Police and crime priorities

Police and crime plans are objectives and priorities outlined by the Police and Crime Commissioner within a force area.


Operational experience

Using your everyday role to inform your evidence base.

Organisational data, facts and figures

Other units & colleagues

Utilising specialist knowledge of colleagues, different teams within force.

Academia & Research

Academia and Research

In order to support and present interventions, strategy and proposals should be embedded with theory.However, that being said, theory can’t be used in isolation and should be utilised alongside operational experience and curiosity, otherwise there would be no way of testing the theory and measuring it’s impact. You should also be critical, not all academia is the definitive answer and should be questioned and tested in order for interventions to be developed and applied contextually. Academia that could be considered is research that underpins EBP, to get a broader perspective of how theory can be implemented, but also the justifications for specific interventions, why they were necessary and how they were received.




What Works Centre

The College of Policing is the What Works Centre for Crime Reduction. This means they collect and share research evidence on crime reduction and support its use in practice. There are many resources and tools accessible on the College of Policing.

Practice Bank

The college has enabled comparison and evaluation of interventions via tools such as: Crime reduction toolkit, Practice bank, Research map National Police library, Published articles.

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College of Policing

Other sources of EBP


The Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy (US)

Arizona State University Center for Problem Orientated Policing

The Society for Evidence Based Policing

NESTA: Alliance for Useful Evidence

Office for National Statistics

The Campbell Collaboration

National Institute of Justice (US)

Other sources of EBP

Policing Insight

The Evidence Quarter

The Police Digital Service

The Global Policing Database (AU)

Stakeholders values and concepts




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Stakeholder values and concepts

Considering what matters to the community and key stakeholders will inform the evidence base you have access to. Identifying key community concerns and influential voices within segments of communities is an invaluable tool in establishing a competent, evidence based problem solving approach. In order to establish the value and efficacy of an initiative consider how you will test, implement and establish interventions. Consider looking at partners who work with the police.

Ask the community and those who the initiative will impact to gauge the reception.

Conduct a test in the early stages of implementation to understand the starting point for participants or location in relation to outcome measures, and be able to match interventions and comparison groups. A post-test should then be conducted to measure the impact of the intervention.

Conduct a process evaluation to understand how the intervention is experienced. After the evaluation has ended, the results should then be recorded, analysed and reported clearly.




Case study: Advice and fraud prevention information for elderly people


Case study

Training social care sector staff to give anti-fraud advice to vulnerable elderly people.


  • This initiative aims to prevent fraud offences from occurring through education.
  • Raise awareness of fraud, enabling social care staff to pass on advice in person to those most at risk in our communities – the elderly and vulnerable.

  • Identify victims who would otherwise have gone undetected.
  • Form partnerships with other organisations.
  • Deliver crime prevention advice to those who need it.
  • Deliver crime prevention advice daily or weekly.

This practice involves a minimum of 12, three-hour training sessions over 12 months, delivered by ex-police officers to a minimum of 10 health and social care workers per session. It aims to train them to deliver prevention advice around doorstep crimes and scams to elderly and vulnerable people.

Feedback from a session held in November 2021 revealed that 100% of respondents:

  • Reported an improvement in knowledge
  • Feel more confident in supporting potential victims
  • Would recommend this training course to others

The complexity and classifications of fraud can be difficult to explain, however this was mitigated by the dedication of the health and social care staff.



Do you think this is a Local or National Policy?

Sesiones de aprendizaje / 02






The aim was to prevent such crimes from occurring within Northamptonshire, removing the huge cost of investigation and the physical and financial impact on victims. Crime prevention advice is calculated to cost as little as 0.04p per day, per person protected, therefore it was cost effective and reduced demand on local fraud teams, who often have limited capacity.

Not quite!

This answer isnot correct






Case study


Case study: Panic alarms for domestic abuse victims

Testing the efficacy of new, innovative, audio-recording panic alarms within the household.

The aim was to test the efficacy of an innovative audio panic alarm against the national standard alarm. This was tested with an evaluation framework of:

  • harm using the Cambridge Crime Harm Index (CCHI) (for domestic abuse and all crimes)
  • crime counts (for domestic abuse and all crimes)
  • calls for service
  • arrests
  • charges
  • police units deployed

The experiment assessed two types of outcomes, including prevention through the warning sticker and the ability to record crime. It also assessed evidence gathering to prosecute in otherwise difficult cases. The measurable outcomes of the experiment were:

  • harm (for domestic abuse and all crimes)
  • crime counts (for domestic abuse and all crimes)
  • calls for service
  • arrests
  • charges
  • police units deployed

This new alarm is an innovative audio panic alarm that contains three vital pieces of additional functionality. These are:

  • pre-activation audio recording of five minutes
  • post-activation audio recording and monitoring up until police arrival (both of the audio clips are available for immediate review by responding officers)
  • visual deterrent sticker placed on points of entry to the premises
This is tested by way of a randomised controlled trial across high-risk domestic abuse victims in London during COVID-19. The results indicate that both alarms are effective in reducing harm and repeat victimisation, but that the audio alarm achieves higher levels of arrest and charge.

Results from the evaluation showed the following: Use of a panic alarm as part of a policing response to high-risk domestic abuse achieves large reductions in harm and repeat victimisation. There is no difference between alarms, which supports that the warning sign had the same efficacy as no sign. Use of an audio panic alarm also increases police arrest and subsequent charging levels and rates.

Challenges included:

  • victims refusing to accept the audio alarm
  • Audio alarm evidence showing that an offence had been committed even where officers did not record an offence through their initial attendance
  • The requirement for re-attendance in some cases where officers had not listened to the audio recording at the scene



Do you think this is a Local or National Policy?

Sesiones de aprendizaje / 02





Depending on the scale of an intervention, the potential impact and interest accross forces, initiatives such as this can be utilised nationally. This is due to the acknowledged impact it may have on crime prevention, deterrence and reduction.In this case, the foreseeable increase in successful prosecution and victim protection was seen as invaluable and inducted as a national intervention.

Not quite!

This answer isnot correct


What do they do?


His Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS)

His Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) independently assesses and reports on the effectiveness and efficiency of police forces and fire & rescue services, ensuring it is within the public interest. Therefore, it is an important tool for supporting suggestions of interventions as it may propose a framework, and offer evidence of the need and "The Why". Why is your intervention necessary? How will it help people? It also practically demonstrates theory and problem solving models in operational policing reality.

Other forces

Other forces

Collaborating with different forces can offer an insight into different interventions implemented in areas of the country that could be assessed, evaluated and tested in your own force area. The effectiveness and manner in which it is implemented may depend on the locality of the intervention. For example, urban interventions may be implemented in rural or semi-rural areas, but components of the intervention may need to be changed with further research conducted to establish efficacy and value.

The selected interventions cover different problem solving initiatives, not just crime prevention.

How do you determine value of evidence?

key ideas



Peer reviewed

Supported by data

Consider the idea and intervention that you’ve thought of, is there foundation in it? Is there data from within force to suggest that there is an issue? Is there research to support that your intervention will help?








Determining value

Supported by theory

Measuring impact

Reflect: Consider your community mapping and make a list of influential members of the community and opportunities to meet them.

Click on the numbers to answer the questions.

The value of evidence is ultimately determined by it's practicality to the development of your initiative. However don't rule out the methodology, evaluation methods and planning of an intervention, even if the topic is unrelated. Valuable insights can be gathered by considering the manner in which an initiative was planned, implemented and evaluated.

Funding & Resources

Stakeholder engagement

Conflicting priorities


Overcoming challenges and making things happen

In order to develop a range of options when initiating an evidence based intervention, it is important to acknowledge the potential barriers, challenges and resources available in order to produce a successful project.

Overcoming challenges

Make sure you have worked through each section and interactive link before proceeding to activity!

Funding and resources


Money, time and people are likely to be the most prominent set of barriers to overcome.


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Writing a business case

Consider how you can link to wider priorities if appropriate. Use data to illuminate the issue such as crime statistics, cost of responding to calls and use of police time.

Consider your audience: what are their ‘pain points’ likely to be and how can you show you have considered them?

Conflicting Priorities

​ We’ve already mentioned that you need to know who to talk to get things done, and understand where they are coming from. In something as complex and dynamic as policing, everyone is going to have slightly differing priorities even when you are ultimately pulling in the same direction. We are going to look at some suggestions as how to make your priorities line up.

Maximise relevance

Learning sessions / 02

Minimise effort

Developing a range of options

Knowing where to start

Often the challenges can feel overwhelming, due to the volume or complexity of them; the need to balance with the rest of your work or simply not knowing how to select the preferred, most likely option to mitigate or resolve the problem.

Knowing where to start

  • ​ Write out the problem in your own words
  • ​ Use resources like Problem-Oriented Policing website or online journals with some broad search terms e.g. “dangerous driving; schools”
  • ​ Use Evidence Based Policing Models
  • Book some time with your PDC to have safe space for ideation and goal setting.
  • ​Prioritisation matrices to help balance work and planning.

Models in EBP

Models in Evidence Based Policing






Evaluating and feedback on interventions

Evaluating interventions


In order to effectively assess the capability and efficacy of interventions, and surrounding research, methods and frameworks should be established to review the risk, cost and benefit, and impact of a project.

  • Critically review the quality of qualitative data and research surrounding the topic.
  • Discuss with collegaues and other teams
  • Utilise College of Policing Evaluation tool
  • Utilise College of Policing Project review checklist

The College of Policing actively encourages officers to share their ideas and interventions to contribute to best practice and the evidence base of the wider profession. This not only creates scope for utilising initiatives in different force areas, but also share when resources have not been helpful for others developing projects or when intended targets haven't been met.When starting a project, you can share your findings with the College of Policing research map, practice bank or crime reduction toolkit.The Society for Evidence Based Policing can also help you share your research with colleagues within the service.

As part of this activity, you will be asked to work through the Ashview scenario.​ ​The purpose of this activity is for you to consider the content you have learned today, engage with the evidential sources provided and use these to consider your own initiative for one crime type mentioned in the Ashview Scenario.​ ​

Welcome to Ashview


Evidential Sources

Force stats & Info


Welcome to Ashview

Existing Research

Priorities & Demand


Interact with the resources on this site to cultivate an initiative.

Read over the scenario and available resources, choose the most relevant crime to YOUR role.

Read through the sources of evidence, return here and rank in terms of value to your crime type.

Use the information to create an intervention based on the available evidence sources.




Submit here

Order the evidential sources based on value to your chosen crime type. Consider what you have learned and judge which sources of evidence will have the most value to your chosen crime. This will enable you to prioritise sources to create your intervention






Force information and crime statistics

Force priorities and policing demand

Current force initiatives & Resources


Existing Research & Academia

Rank the value of sources


There is no right or wrong answer here, it is entirely dependant on your chosen crime type as to how valuable the evidence base is to you. This will give you a starting point as to navigating the evidential sources to start cultivating your initiative.

Nowicki's Groceries

Easington Way - TW DV

Town Centre

Click on each marker to read more about the crimes in Ashview. Select the crime that is most relevant to your everyday role and the situations you are more likely to interact with in your force.

In force Data & Stats

Force info

Crime rate data

Resources & Initiatives

Force information

The Ashview Police Force covers a large area that includes both urban and rural regions of the town. This area encompasses several residential districts, a bustling town centre, and expansive natural landscapes. The CID team is responsible for investigating serious crime within Ashview, to better protect the community. The general crime rate across the community of Ashview is low in comparison to larger towns in the area such as Sandford. A drastic improvement has been seen in relation to the ‘war on drugs’ across certain areas of the community due to successful police investigations and educational interventions focused on the prohibition of illegal drugs.

Crime Data

Recent Challenges

  • A 26% increase in Cybercrime has been recorded within the last 6 months, this is something Sergeants are keen to be a focus moving forward as a priority.
  • Certain cultural/religious groups feel they are not being heard on a number of issues; and the police have seen a rise in discrimination complaints between cultural groups within the community.
  • There are a number complaints arising from the local school surrounding concerns of older men approaching the school gates attempting to make friends with students.
  • The reoccurance of cars being broken into and damaged in local car parks is also drawing footfall away from the town centre, causing a loss in earnings. The lack of action and prosecutions has caused a loss of faith towards Ashview Police.

Resources and Initiatives




Over the past few years strong relationships have been formed by the police force in Ashview and the local services. Together, they have a common goal to protect and support the vulnerable. Social Housing: Housing units are available across Ashview. Mental Health Clinics: Mental health clinics are available to all residents who are referred by GPs; emergency walk-ins are also available.Refuges: Provides specialist support to men, women and children who are experiencing domestic violence.

PartnersWe work with a number of partners across the community that allow us to tackle specific issues from a different angle, these are mainly charitable and not-for-profit organisations. Some examples of these are:

  • Mindset: A comprehensive support centre dedicated to individuals navigating drug, alcohol and mental health challenges, ensuring service users move towards a brighter and healthier future.
  • Take Control: A charitable organisation providing confidential counselling for men and women who may be victims of coercive control or domestic violence.

Initiatives currently in use in Ashview

REBEL Initiative

A problem-solving plan for catalytic converter thefts across Sandford (Operation STARE).

PACT (Police and Communities Together) Monthly Meeting.

Consider the interventions previously and currently used in Ashview. Do they/did they work? Could they be adapted?

Existing research

CCTV business viewing events (2020)

Think Family Early Intervention (TFEI) (2021)

Forensic marking to deter repeat victimisation related to domestic abuse and sexual offences (2020)

Perimeter intrusion detection – remote camera to reduce repeat victimisation (2021)

Aberystwyth University: Rural and Farm Crime in Dyfed-Powys (2020)


Think critically about the existing research. Is it valuable to you? Could it be challenged? Could you develop it further to adapt to your own intervention? Challenge: Use the College of Policing link to find research relevant to your chosen crime type.

Priorities and demands

Ashview Policing Priorites

Policing Demand

Submit your work

End of Unit

Please click on this link to check your understanding of the Evidence Based Policing (Consolidated) content.



Consider time constrains to research, create and manage an effective intervention as well as managing your everyday role. In order to manage competing deadlines, you will need to prioritise actions effectively. Guidance for this can be found on the Policing Evaluation Toolkit. The toolkit offers advice with the preparation, implementation and analysis of a project. Be mindful of enacting the intervention within a set time frame in order to effectively deal with the problem. This is particularly pertinent for more complex operations.

Problem solving policing uses the SARA or OSARA (Objectives) model. It involves: identification of a specific problem; thorough analysis to understand the problem; development of a tailored response; assessment of the effects of the response. The approach assumes that identifying and understanding the root causes of a problem – or conditions that allow it to continue – leads to an effective solution.

Triple T Framework




Once a solution is in place, it should be tracked to ensure we achieve desired outcomes.

Identifying a high priority policing problem (harm-focused).

Strategies to fix the problem through scientific research to make sure they work.

Outline your proposed solution as clearly as you can: dates, staffing and resource requirements, any other agencies you need to work with, measures of success and timeframes.


Preparing a presentation

Ensure you have identfied the key stakeholders that will both help bring an intervention into action and those who will be impacted by the intervention.

  • Organise a meeting
  • Ensure the right people are there
  • Involve colleagus in the discussion to encourage challenge.
  • Research thoroughly and present in a convincing manner.
  • Be prepared to answer and rebut potential challenges.
  • Have answers ready for potential consequences.

Using cyber volunteers to prevent online child victimisation

Consider who you need to consult within force to make decisions.​ Prioritise relationship building and visibility, just as you would be doing with external partners.

Just as you might do a community map and need to understand who your external partners are, you need to understand who are decision makers in your force and what is important to them.What can your sergeant authorise? What would need to go to inspector, chief inspector or higher? ​ ​ Who do you need to support the actual work you need to get done? It is important to remember there might be people who are not ‘above’ in terms of rank or role but whose opinions carry a lot of weight, due to their experience or knowledge or networks. You should also consider other police staff and teams e.g. Neighbourhoods, PCSOs, civilian investigators and those working in central functions like HR and finance. ​ ​ Creating a map of these people can also be useful to better understand who you have in your force network. ​ ​ Go in person to your partner agencies, such as the council, housing, charities and highways, learning what matters and the key stakeholders to help bring your ideas into reality is a fundamental starting point for developing interventions.

Domestic Violence

Easington Way

Tom and Harry have been in a volatile relationship for a number of years. On a number of occasions response teams have attended their home at Easington Way for various incidents ranging from common assault to ABH. There is some clear indication from neighbours, friends and family that Tom is coercively controlling Harry and although he refuses to give a statement to investigating officers, on attendance to the incident, Harry usually has visible injuries to his body and face, this has been captured on BWF.Tom has been arrested and released under investigation, but Harry and Tom remain in a relationship. Brief conversations with officers have suggested that Harry feels like he can’t leave as he is financially dependant on Tom, due to being unemployed. He also does not have any close friends and family in Ashview and feels many domestic abuse support networks only focus on heterosexual relationships, and workers would not be able to relate with his experience. While attending a Policing conference in Sandford, you also hear of similar challenges in different forces.

Be aware of the key challenges in your area and common themes you notice during investigations. Why are the same crimes appearing? Could you map these? Can you identify the cause?

Scared straight programmes

Scared Straight programmes involve organised visits to prison facilities by juvenile delinquents or children at risk of becoming delinquent.The aim of these is to deter those at risk by showing them the reality of incarceration.In actual fact, Overall, the evidence suggests that the intervention has increased juvenile offending. In most studies reviewed, on average, more juveniles who participated in the program were found to commit offences, compared to juveniles who did not participate.


Search the college of Policing practice bank, What Works Centre and other research available. Try and find a initiative created or utilised in your force.

This is the fundamental way to gauge what matters and what works practically. Are there initiatives or interventions currently in place? If so what has been the reception and impact? Have you found common issues arising? Negative sentiments in designated areas or crime hot spots? Have you been involved in an investigation and thought, "wouldn't it be better if this was happening?” Your natural inquisition is the best tool for identifying areas for improvement.

Focuses on humanising officers and educating the public around the diversity of roles that exist in the Metropolitan Police Service.

Behind the badge

Informing operational practice

Developing initiatives

  • Develops a "What Works" approach: which practices and strategies accomplish police missions most cost-effectively.
  • Creates a standard and repertoire of best practice for police officers to refer to and use in operational practice.
  • Existing evidence acts as guidance and advice for developing new initiatives to prevent, divert and reduce crime.
  • Initiatives may not necessarily focus on crime prevention, but have organisational or developmental impact such as reforming trust or upskilling officers .

Bryant and Bryant (2019) suggest that there are usually five stages in any EBP project:1. State the question 2. Gather the existing evidence 3. Assess the existing evidence and undertake research 4. Implement the findings 5. Evaluate the implementation


There are limited funds for the scale of work that needs to be done. ​​There may be different sources of finance accessible for special projects and different pools of funds. This may mean you need to get creative with your problem focused approach and probe into available streams. For project-based work or things which sit outside of day-to-day budget, you may need to write and present a business case.

Everything you interact with in your everyday role can be used to inform evidence based research and interventions. Reflect on the consistent challenges, trends and voices you work with everyday and begin to think of ideas as to how to resolve these.Consider who your key stakeholders within the community are, think of how you can work with others to make a difference.

Your experience

Maximise relevance

Make your priority important to theirs, for example ​find a connection between your goals​.Think about ‘levelling up’, if your priority doesn’t match any of the short term goals of an individual, does it match bigger, more long-term priorities such as those you might find in Policing and Crime Plans or more strategic documents?​ ​

Use this resource to inform your "What Matters" thinking for your initiative.

Demand on Policing

Frameworks for reviewing qualitative data

Frameworks that provide a thematical analysis approach in interpreting qualitative data is a commonly utilised tool in much of the research present within College of Policing reseach projects.An example of this is QUALIPREV, a criteria for the evaluation of crime prevention practices, It is a structural framework and provide a thematic tool for the subsequent analysis, focusing on key themes within research.

Start with a concise summary of the issue and the impact it is having. To start, ask a precise question using three choices:InterventionOutcomeContextYou can then use theory based concepts like the Logic Model to frame the evaluation questions and summarise your plan. You will look at this later.


Where the intervention will be evaluated and the participants/locations that will be involved.

The new policy, tactic and project to be tested and the approach with which it will be compared.

The outcome you will use to measure the effectiveness of the intervention.


Select 2 sources of evidence based policing and read about the resources and support they can offer. Identify and reflect:1. What information on Evidence Based research the resource offers.2. How effective it would be in your practice and why.




In his talk, Nick explores the reasons why we have seen such fluctuations in homicide rates in England and Wales over the last 40 years, and how evidence based planning can work to consistently reduce homicide.

Trends in homicide and responses (SEBP)



Hover over the sections to read more about an example of how evidence based practice can be implemented within the work of a detective.

Aim: To better understand trends in homicide and cultivate an enforcement response.


  • Reviewed data for long-term trends
  • Reviewed data in other countries
  • Carried out literature review on academic papers to determine consistent risk factors

Findings: An evaluation of policing and criminal justice responses found consistency in having more police leads to fewer homicides. In particular, specific interventions e.g. focused deterrents, conditional repression and Street Crime initiatives.

  • Early intervention is recommended
  • Focused police approaches on OCGs, drug markets and violent crime
  • Work alongside other initiatives e.g. reduction of illicit drug demand and anti-violent norms at a young age.

  • Identifying types of homicide in order to create an effective response.
  • Scope of research

However, this should not be sole evidential source. You should consider “cutting through the noise” analysing what matters. This can be done by comparing what matters to the community with force data and priorities.

This is a dynamic determinant. The intervention will serve the community you work in, therefore ideas and interventions should be communicated within the area it may impact most. The community is also a fundamental evidential source, where the challenges they face can form the basis of influential interventions.

The community

Scholarly review

Peer reviewed

Discuss the concept with a colleague, even better if they share the same responsibilities as you. Do they also think there is an issue, it’s always a good idea to get a different perspective. However, don’t let this be a deterrent!​

In order for academia to be considered valuable, the paper, journal or research should be peer reviewed. This means the work has been subjected to the scrutiny of others who are experts in the same field. This ensures the work is of scholarly or scientific quality.

Consult a colleague


Consider how you can link to wider priorities if appropriate ​.Use data to illuminate the issue such as crime statistics, cost of responding to calls and use of police time.

Are there any current interventions in place within your force area? Are they working? Could they be adapted or used?Consider researching these initiatives and evaluating them for their usefulness, functuality and effectiveness.You can find these by researching within your force, speaking to colleagues and using the College of Policing What Works tool.

What Works

Supported by theory

Evidence-based policing (EBP) means that the best available evidence is used to inform and challenge policing policies, practices and decisions. The best available evidence will use appropriate research methods and sources for the question being asked. The theoretical basis and context of the research should also be made clear, and accessible to be critically analysed.

Where can I find research?

  • High quality peer reviewed research: Research Gate, Springer, Taylor & Francis, Wiley, Sage, College of Policing.
  • Legislation
  • Conferences e.g., National Problem-Solving Conference
  • Podcasts e.g., Reducing Crime podcast #59 Mark Evans – Soundcloud; TED Talks
  • Linked in
Consider your inclusion search criteria key words e.g. Homicide, Domestic violence & Burglary

In the town centre, there have been numerous car break ins at the Highgate public car park, near the train station. Residents have had items stolen such as laptops, phones and dash cams. The crimes have left the residents feeling unsafe and as a result, has drawn footfall away from the centre due to concerns of where it is safe to park. There is CCTV in operation at the car park, however it only captures one side and is regularly broken. The car park is barrier-free and open 24 hours, often used by residents parking their car overnight to catch the train to Sandford and London. There are parking officers in operation that check infrequently that cars have paid accurately to park there. Parking is paid for via the ParkGo App.

Car Park thefts

Town Centre

Look to speak to individuals outside of your team e.g. neighbourhood teams, response and Police Staff. Curiosity also extends to your peers, ask them if they have noticed any changes, or any developmental needs.


Evidence Based Policing means using the best available evidence to inform decisions about practices and policies.EBP is an ongoing problem-solving cycle aiming to increase our understanding by building a body of evidence for the profession.This can be achieved by using models such as the ATLAS model.


  • Ask challenging questions
  • Reflect on current practices
  • Build a hypothesis


  • Test and evaluate new ideas, approaches and hypotheses.
  • Produce evidence through new research and analysis.
  • Critically review and appraise existing research (synthesis).


  • Adapt current practices and policies based on the best evidence available.
  • Monitor implementation of new approaches.
  • Start asking new questions!






  • Do new and existing approaches have the effect we thought?
  • How do practices and policies work in the "real-world"?
  • Understanding success and failures.

In order for academic research and theory to be useful, it must be peer reviewed. Consider your search criteria e.g. prevalence of county lines in rural South West. Using specific search criteria can help target research to a designated force area, however using data and interventions from other forces and adapting these resources is a great way to start formulating an evidence base.


Each force has priorities and objectives outlined in their Police and Crime Plans. Consider are there ways to implement an innovative approach to tackling them? What is the data suggesting about these priorities? Could more resources be assigned?Research your force's Police and Crime plan to identify the priorities and main challenges in your area.

Measuring impact

How will the impact of an evidence based intervention be captured, monitored and measured? Once the intervention has been established, the data and impact captured can then be used for your own self-development to contribute to future policing strategies.

What Works vs What Matters

Evaluation toolkit

The toolkit can be used to assess whether an intervention is effective and the strength of its impact, this in turn can be used to guide future decisions effectively prioritise your resources.

Mitigating what matters to the community and what works is a delicate balance. For instance, if there is an outpouring of concern towards public drinking in a park in a town centre, does this warrant an intervention focused on an increase in police presence when policing resources are already strained?What if this in turn leads to an increase in anti-social behaviour and violence? The underlying principles of EBP encourage officers to challenge the idea that just because something works and it's the way it's always been done, doesn't mean it can't be improved.

Can the intervention be measured accurately? Is it realistic that it could be implemented appropriately? The next thing to consider is how it is tested and for that we will consider the Maryland Scale.


Utilised by the College of Policing as a method of measuring impact and “what works” The Maryland Scale and Ladder of Evidence indicates the level of study that can be conducted on research to determine it’s effectiveness. Hover over the eyeglasses to find out more.

Level 4 has multiple test and control sites giving some management over variables – sickness, culture, sociodemographic characteristics and different crime or demand profiles. The evidence is consistent that the introduction of (intervention) led to a positive effect.

Level 2 has a before and after measure. This is a baseline to compare to but again, although we can conclude if there is change, we cannot determine if it is related to the intervention. The influence of other factors cannot be ruled out.

Level 3 has a before and after measure across two sites, one where activity was implemented and another which remains business as usual. Any change is likely to be a result of (intervention) being introduced, rather than other factors.

Level 1 is a one-off measure with no comparison site. If there was any change, we cannot say whether the intervention had anything to do with it.

Level 5 is the gold standard with randomised control trials. Use of (intervention) directly resulted in (outcomes), as alternative explanations for the change can be ruled out.

Consider your own experience, when have you used an evidence base to make decisions?Have you identified a common challenge within your experience that could be changed?


The Problem Analysis Triangle

The Problem Analysis Triangle provides a way of thinking about recurring problems of crime and disorder. Crime and disorder occurs in places that bring together motivated offenders, suitable targets/victims, and an absence of 'capable guardians'.Solutions should identify a capable handler for offenders, guardian for victims and/or a manager for places/locations. This removes one side of the "problem triangle".





Make yourself aware as to what is happening in force, and not just within your remit.Take note of patterns within your own work and colleagues' to identify common themes and challenges. You should also consider the work partner agencies are doing within the force area, such as schools, the council, drug and alcohol schemes and refuge centres.This includes arrest statistics, increases in homelessness, drug use and anti-social behaviour.

More recently, the side of his shop was vandalised with a symbol consistent with far right extremist beliefs. Sam is very scared for his family and livelihood. There have been similar offences taking place accross Ashview at local convenience stores.

Nowicki's store is frequently the target of various ASB offences, such as shoplifting and criminal damage. A regular group of young adults and children aged around 14, visit Nowicki's. The young men will enter the shop, verbally harassing Sam Nowicki, using racially offensive and derogative language. The younger children will usually be seen being encouraged to enter the shop and steal sweets, shout offensive language and then leave. Sam has reported this on a number of occasions and does not have CCTV due to his store being a small, family run store, Sam has said he cannot afford to spare the expense of cameras.

Racially motivated public order

Nowicki's Groceries

Minimise effort

Make it as easy as possible for people to support your priorities. This might look like streamlining asks as much as possible e.g. ​ Presenting only key information. ​Use reciprocity to make someone more likely to comply. In other words, tell them what you have already done. “I’ve already taken care of abc so all I need is xyz”.

Forensic marking to deter repeat victimisation related to domestic abuse and sexual offences