Global Policing Database: Further development

Reference code: 
DMPCD 2016 18
Date signed: 
18 February 2016
Authorisation name: 
Stephen Greenhalgh (past staff), Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime

Executive summary

This paper requests the approval of accepting a grant from the College of Policing to supplement the development of the Global Policing Database (GPD). This year MOPAC launched this innovative resource funded through the Innovation Fund of the College of Policing. This funding will enable additional progress to the development of the Global Policing Database. The grant is being awarded by the College of Policing, and will be delivered through MOPAC’s partnership with the University of Queensland who are delivering the GPD.  


The DMPC is asked to approve and sign the agreement to accept the College of Policing Grant of £28,193.29 to supplement the development of the Global Policing Database.  

Non-confidential facts and advice to the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime (DMPC)

1.    Introduction and background

1.1.    The Global Policing Database (GPD) is a web-based and searchable database designed to capture all published and unpublished experimental and quasi-experimental evaluations of policing interventions conducted since 1950. Using innovative systematic review technologies, a team of researchers is compiling the GPD by systematically searching, retrieving and screening published and unpublished literature that reports on impact evaluations of policing interventions from 1 January 1950. What makes the GPD unique is lack of restrictions on the type of policing technique, type of outcome measure, or language of the research. The GPD captures research where police are implementers of an intervention, participants in an intervention research, or intervention partners. In addition, measures of intervention effectiveness will extend beyond crime and disorder outcomes to include all possible outcomes, including, but not limited to: perceptions of police, fear of crime, or police biopsychosocial wellbeing.

1.2.    The Beta Version of the GPD was launched by MOPAC and the University of Queensland in London in June 2015.  This Beta Version contains a sample of research from 2014 (see The foundational development and Beta Version of the GPD were supported by College of Policing funds (administered through MOPAC) and an Australian Research Council Laureate Fellowship awarded to Professor Mazerolle. 

1.3.    As of December 2015 the research team (in conjunction with a large team of unpaid student interns) has achieved the following milestones:

•    Screened 86,277 title and abstracts for initial eligibility (2014 – 2008 inclusive)
•    Retrieved the full-text for over 30,000 documents screened as initially eligible
•    Screened 9,888 full-text documents for Stage 1 final eligibility (2014 – 2012 inclusive)
•    Screened and coded 306 full-text documents for inclusion in the GPD (final eligible for 2014 documents, n = 80)
•    Graduated approximately 60 unpaid students through the GPD internship program. This program requires that students complete standardised training and simulation tasks and a minimum of 35 hours work. For quality assurance purposes, each intern’s work is continually monitored and cross-checked by senior project staff. 
•    Completed the first systematic review using the GPD. This review synthesises the evidence on the effectiveness of police investigative techniques for serious violent crime.
•    Profiled the GPD in an evidence-based policing segment compiled at the request of the International Association of Police Chiefs (see
1.4.    This College of Policing Fund will enable work to continue to improve the system and the associated inputting process to ensure that it is fit for purpose and enhance its usability.  


2.    Commissioning Process

2.1.    Currently the GPD is populated solely by the AU University but is accessed globally by academics and enforcement bodies around the world.  The GPD is at risk of not realising its full global potential as there is a lack of sufficiently competent and capable persons to undertake full-text screening and light coding of eligible research studies.  There are currently an estimated 500 to 700 pieces of identified research dating back to 2010, which represents approximately 20% of all research captured by the comprehensive GPD systematic search, awaiting full text screening and coding onto the GPD.  As a key exponent of the evidence based approach and a partner organisation for the creation and ongoing use of the GPD, there is a reputational risk to the College if the records are not accurate, current and accessible in line with HMG data standards; the GPD will lose credibility and fall into disuse.

2.2.    This grant of £28,193.29 will enable the assessment of the current and future needs of the GPD to meet the developing user requirements and to create a resilient and future proofed application. 

3.    Financial Comments

3.1.    The College of Policing has approved this funding.

4.    Legal Comments

4.1.    The funding will come from the College of Policing through the Home Office.

5.    Equality Comments

5.1.    There are no direct equality and diversity implications arising from this proposal.

5.2.    The Global Policing Database will increase international multi-agency partnership cooperation and learning; undoubtedly facilitating the development of a range of policing areas with an equality dimension whether this be community engagement or the recruitment of a diverse police force.

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