Evidence Based Policing and Crime Science

Prof Gloria Laycock1

1Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science, University College London (UCL)

Suggesting ‘new’ ways to police are a feature of modern policing. EBP is one of the latest. In this presentation some of the similarities between EBP, problem solving and problem oriented policing will be briefly discussed against the backdrop of crime science – the argument being that they are all essentially singing from the same hymn sheet.

The presentation will go on to discuss what works in crime reduction paying particular attention to taking a problem solving approach and the importance of identifying the mechanisms, contexts, implementation challenges and costs associated with an intervention.

Acknowledging the extent to which problem solving ‘works’, the UK Government has recently invested £6m in an attempt to embed the approach in UK policing. This investment is being evaluated by UCL, which has led to the identification of the necessary conditions for successfully implementing and embedding change in police agencies. Early findings will be presented.


Gloria Laycock is an internationally renowned expert in crime prevention, and especially situational approaches which seek to design out situations which provoke crime.

She graduated in Psychology from UCL in 1968 and began her career as a prison psychologist. In 1975 she completed her PhD, working at Wormwood Scrubs prison in West London. Building on her PhD research, she commenced work in the late 1970s at the Home Office where she stayed for over thirty years, dedicating the last twenty to research and development in the policing and crime prevention fields.
She founded the Home Office Police Research Group, and edited its publications on policing and crime prevention for seven years. She has been a consultant on policing and crime prevention in North and South America, Australia, New Zealand, Israel, South Africa, the UAE and Europe. She was an advisor to HEUNI, a UN affiliated crime prevention organisation based in Helsinki from 2001 until 2012 and has acted as a UN consultant in Myanmar.
In 1999 she was awarded an International Fellowship by the United States National Institute of Justice in Washington DC, followed by a four-month consultancy at the Australian Institute of Criminology in Canberra. She returned to the UK to become the founding director of the Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science in 2001. The institute engages a wide range of sciences and design experts in cross-disciplinary work in collaboration with police and industry to find new ways to reduce crime. She was founding editor of the Crime Science book series and was Editor in Chief of the Crime Science Journal until 2018.
She was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2008 for services to crime policy.