How We Do It
What methods does the CPLE use to collect its data?
At the CPLE we try to match the methodology with the research question, working to address your targeted problem through a variety of means. These range from interviews to surveys to experiments to reviews of departmental records. We engage in both short-term and long-term (longitudinal) data collection.
Who does the CPLE collect data from?
For surveys they are simply distributed to officers and officers in training. For experimental research, off-duty, sworn personnel are paid for their voluntary participation. Non-sworn personnel often participate as a form of training. Records are accessed in a manner that assures complete confidentiality for participating officers.
How does the CPLE protect the identities of research participants?
All identifying information from anyone who participates in an interview, a survey or an experiment is always stripped from all of our files. Neither supervisors nor members of the media nor lay citizens ever know the identity of participating individuals, nor do they have a record of those who have participated and those who have not. In research reports, all data is always reported in aggregate form. The CPLE is not interested in targeting individuals but in understanding general trends of behavior within a police force as a whole.
Who does the data CPLE collects belong to?
Research data belongs to Principal Investigators (PI) and the CPLE–and not to the law enforcement agency from which the data was collected. Upon publication of a given dataset, the PI must produce electronic copies of his or her dataset for the CPLE to archive. Should another researcher be interested in doing comparative data, either longitudinally within your agency or comparatively across agencies, they must approach the CPLE. The CPLE will then approach the initial PI about such a collaboration. The initial PI will then have the opportunity either to collaborate with the interested researcher, or remain neutral to the new project.
How much does it cost?
CPLE provides its services at no cost to police departments. The CPLE is committed to research transparency and, as such, does not charge participating law enforcement agencies for access to our expert researchers. To that end, CPLE researchers are never funded by participating law enforcement agencies and are able to render both expert consultations (for law enforcement) and scholarly publications (for the academic and general public) absent any hint of coercion or incentive.