Concepts and Tools for the Development of Intelligence-led Policing in France and Germany – CODISP


Concepts for the Development of Intelligence, Security, and Prevention

Assesing and developing intelligence-led policing tools for knowledge-based security partnerships

CODISP is social science project on recent forms of knowledge management work in the law enforcement organisation. The aim is to analyse the way knowledge management in law enforcement (its methods and forms, as well as the means and degree of knowledge sharing), on the one hand, and the knowledge-based law enforcement work (in regard to social environments and types of tort), on the other hand, interact. <br />The originality of our approach lies in highlighting the extent to which partnership and deliberation involving a range of public actors contribute to absorption of many of the teachings and approaches of policy intelligence, despite the obstacles that external, “scientific” approaches to policy-making ordinarily encounter among policy-makers who are used to making decisions in accordance with familiar routines, habits, and assumptions that may conflict with the prescriptions of outside experts.<br />A number of recent studies of the dynamics of partnership across a variety of domains have concluded that cooperation and exchange among heterogeneous actors in a deliberative setting are highly conducive to rational decision-making and to the development of creative solutions to familiar problems, and that many solutions that are developed jointly in partnership settings gain acceptance as a result of being adopted by a process perceived as legitimate. Our work explores how, and under what conditions, venues that bring together public and private actors from a variety of professions and disciplines are able to overcome the institutional barriers to the adoption of evidence-based approaches to problems of security. <br />Our main partner in the National Gendarmerie is the Research Center of the College for National Gendarmerie Officers and our main partner in the National Police is the Research Center of the France’s National Police College. These partners ensure the results of the project are disseminated and taken into account within police organizations and police schools.

Inspired by a variety of sociological fields of study (including the sociology of organizations, the sociology of knowledge, and the study of legal transfers and legal translation), our project explores :
- The relationship between different ways of acquiring, analyzing, and using intelligence in knowledge communities inside the police and, across institutional boundaries, in local security partnerships between police and other public actors; our aim is to study how ways of acquiring and using knowledge shape the relationships, interactions, and practices of participants in these knowledge communities;
- How the analytical tools, skills and expertise that make up the “métier” of intelligence are studied and acquired by members of knowledge communities;
- What professional, organizational, and cultural adaptations to a knowledge community tend to favor its incorporation of scientific expertise that comes to it from the outside;
- And how teachings of intelligence-led policing affect the way in which decision-makers make sense of and handle security concerns.
Our research model is based on the following hypothesis. The means used to develop intelligence about local security concerns vary significantly across institutional context, depending in part on the ecology of actors who work together in knowledge communities, the available resources and skills, and the professional commitments of participants. These means vary in the ways in which they are formalized, rationalized, and theorized. Putting together an approach to the collection and analysis of relevant intelligence often means introducing external forms of expertise into the partnership setting, which may conflict with institutionally well-entrenched routines and practices that are more familiar to many of the partnership’s participants. Institutional actors may resist these new forms of social scientific expertise or may instead embrace and adapt them or may use them to develop new, hybrid approaches.

Through a series of case studies in local police services in 10 regions:
- We trace and try to understand the specific work flows occurring in the everyday work of law enforcement staff. In that respect, enabling police officers to handle the issues actually arising is what the main focus is on.
-We look into the question of what role innovative concepts (such as «intelligence-led policing«) play in police work. How can they be applied? How are they reviewed and adapted locally?
- We offer an opportunity for ideas to be exchanged on methods of managing knowledge beyond the boundaries of departments, law enforcement organisations and political cultures.
- We supply demonstration materials for training teams in the sense of «learning organisations«.
- We provide insights into the operating mode of specific law enforcement measures, including attempts to monitor and improve them.
- The police forces make use of the case studies collected by us as teaching material.
- The case studies operate as subjects of self-supporting training, possibly leading to accreditation.
- The training courses provide the opportunity for a helpful exchange of ideas on methods of working.
- Through these methods, the police is given a wide range of problem-solving tools.

To be completed.

To be completed.

Throughout Europe and North America, police services are increasingly turning towards proactive, problem-oriented approaches. Some cultivate, what is called “intelligence-led policing” - even down to the local level. The research hinges on this general trend in order to renew the understanding of the practical relations of local knowledge and organizational knowledge especially in the field of security. It focuses on an important aspect of practical police work and scientific research alike: the translation and mobilization of ad hoc (local) knowledge into organizational knowledge. This project will analyze and compare the knowledge cultures that evolve with the prevalent demands of preventive, proactive and problem-oriented policing. It does so in order to support actual organizational investments into the strengthening and professionalization of the “intelligence function”.
Our research will not just advance the social scientific knowledge on learning organizations in general and knowledge-led policing in specific. It also allows for various applications that make the research itself part of the fields studied : the researchers will turn into agents of the knowledge-systems and the epistemic cultures by developing means and tools of knowledge production and knowledge consumption. There are three major applications that we have in mind :
(1) The first will consist of supplying police authorities with a range of concepts from which they can develop an integrated knowledge system within their own organization or sections of this organization. This includes partnerships and collaborations with other public agencies. The research will draw lessons for both countries on the reflections and experiences developed in the other country. On the base,of an inventory of best practices in both countries, we will constitute a repertoire of elements “ready to use” for the elaboration of a general public security intelligence doctrine.
(2) The second objective focuses on the development and innovation of tools for human resources training. The tools are dedicated to the reinforcement of professional skills in the field of knowledge production and consumption in various situations of policing. To that end, the research will list and assess the existing training courses in France and Germany in the public security intelligence sector, so as to supply police schools with elements to enrich their training didactics and technologies. In principle, the best-practice approach needs to be translated into training concepts. This involves the early stages of human resources development: the recruitment, the job descriptions, the skill standards, and career profiles. It involves, moreover, the professional culture that involves boundary work within the organization and towards potential partners and audiences ‘outside’.
(3) The third objective translates in technological solutions devoted to the sharing of public security intelligence amongst concerned staff. Our aim is to accompany and inform the development of a technological tool that gives access to the different rules and methods involved in the knowledge system: good practices repertoires (like the one this research will elaborate), auto-training tools for different analysis methods, a directory of skills and experts on precise subjects, an assistance for researching open sources on a whole range of problems linked to security, intelligence reports filled with concrete problem analyses, alert bulletins. It should therefore allow analysts, not only to have a better understanding of important evolutions in order and security issues, but also to keep them informed of strategic innovations when responding to a variety of problems.

Project coordination

Thierry DELPEUCH (Centre Marc Bloch) – thierry.delpeuch@cmb.hu-berlin.de

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


CMB Centre Marc Bloch

Help of the ANR 668,123 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: March 2012 - 36 Months

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