Joint AFP / UQ Research Project – A Randomised Controlled Trial of Counter Child Exploitation Material Risk Assessment Tools

Dr David Mount1, Professor Lorraine  Mazerolle2

1University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, 2University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

The proliferation of child exploitation material (CEM) on the internet and social media platforms and the ever-increasing involvement of Australian citizens in its possession, production and distribution is a growing concern for law enforcement. Of equal concern is the ability of police to effectively manage the increasing flows of cyber tip data and the associated risk assessment / investigative actions required to counter and reduce CEM.  Commencing in July 2019, UQ was contracted by the AFP to undertake a review of its existing CEM risk assessment processes and tools with a view to developing an improved CEM risk assessment procedure based on current, global best-practice. Following this review, UQ, in partnership with the AFP’s Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE), will conduct a Randomised Controlled Trial (RCT) of the newly-developed CEM risk assessment tool in order to measure its relative effectiveness and improvements on the existing processes and procedures.


As this research will be ‘in-flight’ at the time of the ANZSEBP Conference, this short shot oral presentation will detail the findings of the review phase of the research project. The presentation will also provide an overview of the proposed RCT design and outcome measures with a view to demonstrating Evidence Based Policing in action.


Dr David Mount is a former military intelligence officer who served in the ADF for 30 years in a variety of command, staff and training appointments in Australia and deployed on operations overseas. Since completing his PhD in Criminology at UQ in 2017, he has been engaged in a range of lecturing, course development and research roles associated with global security and cyber crimes. He is currently the Chief Investigator of a joint UQ / AFP research project that is reviewing the AFP’s risk assessment procedures associated with countering online child sexual exploitation.

Australia & New Zealand Society of Evidence Based Policing

The Australia & New Zealand Society of Evidence Based Policing (ANZSEBP) was formed in April 2013 in Brisbane, Australia. The ANZSEBP is a police practitioner-led Society. The mission of the ANZSEBP is to develop, disseminate and advocate for police to use scientific research (“the evidence”) to guide best practice in all aspects of policing. The ANZSEBP Chairperson serves on the Executive Board of the British Society of Evidence Based Policing, ensuring that the ANZSEBP works cooperatively with an international group of police to advance evidence based policing.

Conference Managers

Please contact the team at Conference Design with any questions regarding the conference.