Guide: Making Sense of Crime

There’s always heated debate about crime in the media and a lot of political argument about how we should respond to it. But these arguments rarely provide insight into what actually causes crime, what lies behind trends over time and in different places, and how best to go about reducing it.

This guide looks at some of the key things we do know and why it has been so difficult to make sense of crime policy. An important point throughout is that policymakers sometimes have to make decisions when things are not clear-cut. They have a better chance of making effective policies if they admit to this uncertainty – and conduct robust research to find out more. In the following pages we have shared insights from experts in violent crime, policing, crime science, psychology and the media’s influence on the crime debate. They don’t have all the answers, but we hope they leave you better-placed to hold policymakers and commentators to account and promote a more useful discussion about crime.

This guide was produced by Sense About Science in collaboration with UCL Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science, the British Psychological Society and the University of Bedfordshire. Published: 30 April 2015

To read the summary and download Making Sense of Crime, click here.

Tags: crime policy

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