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Connecting academic research and police practice

An Evidence Cafe is characterised by the knowledge exchange between an academic and frontline police officers. They are facilitated by an Evidence-Based Champion (EBC) from the host force, a Research Fellow (RF) from the Open University and an Academic from one of the Consortium research projects. The café starts with coffee and a brief introduction to the aims of the cafe from the EBC and/or RF, framing the discussion within the context of evidence based policing.

The academic gives a 5 minute presentation key research outcomes and highlighting areas they think are of relevance. Coffee cups are refilled, and attendees discuss the issues raised with reference to their experiences in practice.

The key here is 'knowledge exchange' rather than presentation.

Following on from an Evidence Cafe, forces may want rollout cafe-style activities called Practitioner Cafes to share concepts of evidence based practice and evidence based policing more widely within the force. 

Cafes are underpinned by the Learning Resources available from the Policing Centre for Research and Learning Website and selected for their relevance to policing needs.

Contact us at the Centre to discuss hosting an Evidence Cafe at your force.

Videos from Past Evidence Cafes

Weymouth Evidence Cafe 2016 from Gill Clough on Vimeo.

The Dorset Force Evidence Cafe was held in Weymouth and focused on the topic of Collecting First Accounts from Children, framed in a discussion of Evidence-Based Practice. Over 40 officers from all ranks attended. The video lasts 2m12sec.

Evidence Cafe Blackburn 2016 from Gill Clough on Vimeo.

The Lancashire Force Evidence Cafe was held in Blackburn and explored Evidence-Based Practice, drawing on examples from other domains (e.g. medicine, health care) and considering lessons that could be applicable to the policing context. The video lasts 2m32sec.