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Working Out What to Do: Evidence-Based Crime Reduction

NCJ Number
Date Published
74 pages
This report aims to assist police services and local partnerships approach to crime prevention and problem-solving in a coherent, informed, and structured way, providing principles for effective evidence-based practice.
This report illustrates some of the principles of crime reduction through effective strategic approaches that can be developed or modified to suit local needs. Research for this report was drawn from the United States and the United Kingdom with funding from the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice. The process of problem specification and the development of tactics to address specified problems are necessary for the successful delivery of a crime reduction project. The report is divided into four sections: specifying problems; developing tactics, such as mechanisms, contexts, and replication; a practical example, domestic burglary; and the conclusion. Six key concepts are used throughout the report that include: (1) the aim of the project -- a statement of overall aspiration; (2) the problem-specification -- a more detailed and evidenced statement of that aim; (3) the tactics -- including what will actually be done; (4) the mechanisms -- how the tactics will work; (5) the context -- the application of the tactics; and (6) the replication -- modifying effective approaches. The example on domestic burglary discusses ways to define the problem and effective tactics using the mechanisms described. The report concludes with two checklists for effective evidence-based problem solving. The first one ensures that police agencies and partnerships were set-up to deliver effective evidence-based practice. The second one was a confirmation that the plan really made sense and that all problems were addressed. References, tables, and figures

Date Published: January 1, 2002