Center for Police Research

Police Research at Uppsala University

universitetshusetAt the Faculty of Theology there is from a police perspective interesting research, among other things, from the perspective of social norm influences and crime prevention. The results of the research project The Impact of Religion and participation in the development of the World Values Survey are examples of undertakings which have great relevance for the police today to, for example, understand political and religious extremism. For research information, see the Faculty of Theology.

At the Faculty of Law almost all branches of law have relevance to police work, in particular 

Besides these, there are also specialists in other areas important for the police, such as legal history, environmental law, children’s rights, and international law/human rights. 

At the Faculty of History-Philosophy can be mentioned the research at the Department of History, regarding police history, hate crimes and rape. The department participates in contract education for police concerning, for example, so-called special police tactics. Specifically regarding hate crimes, there is here unique national expertise which is frequently used by all actors within the criminal justice system. At the faculty there are also two centers of interest in this connection. The Hugo Valentin Centre, where research is conducted which is essential for understanding today’s multicultural society, among other things, with regard to crime. The Centre for Gender Studies with, among other things, ongoing research concerning masculinity and risk assessment in connection with blue light emergencies, violence, and other crimes directed toward handicapped women.

At the Faculty of Social Sciences police-relevant research is pursued, among others things, at the departments enumerated below. At the Department of Business Studies, within the framework for public sector studies, projects are presently pursued which have direct relevance to the police. Within the scope of the Department of Sociology's sector, studies are pursued with relevance to police work within the areas of social care, organization, treatment, gender, and children’s perspectives. Regarding the police research at the Department of Government can, among other things, studies concerning bribes, crisis management, and professionalization be mentioned. Apropos the latter, one area of application is precisely the police profession. The Department of Psychology has earlier been strong within research regarding perception and traffic. Today, the major strength here lies in various areas of cognition research where, among other things, studies concerning children, adolescents and different types of neuropsychiatric disorders are of particular interest to the police.

Within the Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, can first and foremost be mentioned the National Center for Knowledge on Men’s Violence against Women (NCK). With respect to the ongoing research pursued at the center, can be mentioned the program to investigate the health and medical institutions’ care of sex crime victims. The NCK also works with increasing knowledge on a national level regarding men’s violence against women, and with developing methods for taking care of women who have been subjected to violence. In addition to knowledge and method development, the NCK also works with information, education, and compilation of research findings. For information see the National Center for Knowledge on Men’s Violence against Women.

At the Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology there is research on forensic DNA-analysis. In addition, a unique Master's program in forensic science has been initiated. The education provides knowledge and skills which are directly applicable within the criminal justice system and in toxicological work. The program is based on methods and technologies which are used within today’s world-leading forensic science laboratories. The methodologies used in the laboratory training have direct applicability to issues within forensic science.

At the Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences is the Section of Biological Research on Drug Dependence, where the work is focused on knowledge which is of great relevance for understanding and combating crime. Not least can here be noted the groundbreaking studies regarding the effects of anabolic steroids on the brain. See the Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences/Biological Research on Drug Dependence.

Last, but not least, the Section of Forensic Medicine at the Department of Surgical Sciences should be noted. The section has close collaboration with The National Board of Forensic Medicine. The research pursued at the section is of greatest relevance for all actors within the criminal justice system. At the section there are plans to create a national wound database. Such a wound database would, if it materialized, serve as a national repository of knowledge to be utilized both in research and for practical purposes.

Within the Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology there is research of great relevance to police work. Police authorities turn to investigators at, for example, the Department of Physical and Analytical Chemistry to solve problems in preliminary criminal investigations, which, among other things, has led to the course Crime and Chemistry. The course is designed for students with some basic chemistry background with the aim of providing insight into how committed crimes can be detected with the help of chemistry, but also how knowledge of chemistry can be used to identify perpetrators. Another area with great potential and relevance to the police is the work at the Department of Information Technology. Within a closely collaborating organization, the work here spans over the entire field of information technology, from data compilation and data mining via signal processing, computational science, and automatic control technology, to the communication of results with the aid of database management and knowledge of human-computer interactions. This makes the work at the department extremely interesting from a police perspective.