Research methods

The research involves four broad strands of inquiry.

The first involves gathering large amounts of data that are routinely gathered by our police partners on workload deployments, police citizen contacts, crime rates and use of force. This will then be cross referenced with other non-police data such as the 2021 Census. This will help to understand the characteristics of the environments where police officers are deployed and how these relate to police use of force.

Second, the project will also undertake analysis of body worn camera footage from use of force incidents. This will enable evidence-based understanding of how interactions between officers and citizens can intensify or remain calm, and how taser use relates to these patterns of escalation and de-escalation.

Third, the project will also undertake observations of taser training as well as officers on patrol.

Fourth, the project team will conduct interviews, focus groups and discussions with a variety of different stakeholders. These include police officers who use taser to gain their perspectives and understanding of how and why the weapon is deployed; members of the public, some of whom will have been subjected to taser; scrutiny groups and other key stakeholders.