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'We can’t legislate our way out of the Isis crisis' Martin Innes writes for the Guardian

To prevent the radicalisation of Britons, it is soft power that has been shown to work, not ostentatious ideas like banning orders

In considering changing the law to combat the threat of Isis affiliates in the UK, the home secretary is following a well-trodden political path. Confronted by urgent and complex social problems, politicians frequently reach for legislative change. After all, it is a response giving the impression to an anxious and angry electorate that action is being taken. Unfortunately, in this case it will not work. A few symbolic tweaks to the law will afford some marginal gains, but won’t do the “heavy lifting” in preventing small groups of young people from seeking to join a hyper-violent Islamist movement.

Instead, government focus needs to be upon enabling the messy, unpredictable and contingent “dirty work” of local counter-terrorism on the ground, and learning the lessons about what works and what doesn’t from recent experience. This reflects what we know from a growing body of research about the radicalisation process.

Inculcating violent extremist motivations involves interacting “push” and “pull” factors. Pushes propel individuals away from contacts with mainstream society and values. Pull factors attract people towards violent groups – often by providing a sense of belonging, identity and purpose. Interfering with these processes of attraction and propulsion requires sophisticated and subtle preventative interventions.

In 2011 my research team at Cardiff University was commissioned to assess the delivery of the Prevent strategy in four areas of the country. We identified three key aspects. A lot of effort at the time was going into building community cohesion. Counter-radicalisation activities were focused on inhibiting people from taking on extremist ideologies and narratives. The least developed aspects of Prevent related to deradicalisation – altering the behaviour and motivations of those already exposed to extremist ideas.

CLICK HERE READ FULL ARTICLE

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Home Office Policy Lab Workshop Sets Out Future of Police Digitisation

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The Police Science and Technology Unit within the Home Office recently partnered with Policy Lab to bring experts in the fields of Policing, Design and Digital Technologies to find innovative ways of using digital technology to enhance Police services.

Martin Innes - Director of the UPSI. Prof. attended the event and set out work he had been doing tracking social media over the murder of Lee Rigby. The incident, and the level of social media activity around it, demonstrated that securing the scene of the crime was no longer possible in a world where people can instantly tweet photos. Interestingly the local provenance of the tweets being mostly from the Lewisham area meant that despite greater connectivity, people were still most concerned with the geographic area closest to them.

Other participants included Dr Andrea Siodmok, (Head of the Policy Lab) Chris Price (Head of the Police Science and Technology Unit in the Home Office) and Chief Constables Giles York from Surrey Police and Simon Parr from Cambridgeshire Police who are national policing leads for digital evidence and information management respectively and both passionate advocate about digital working.

The outcome was a range of prototypes for improving services to victims of crime, from an online skills academy where people could go to learn how to prevent crime to an online court where you could report crime, give evidence and hear the result, all from the comfort of your own living room.

A full report from the workshop is available to view online here: https://openpolicy.blog.gov.uk/2014/07/29/policy-labs-digitisation-workshop/

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As child abuse investigations take shape, old crimes are transforming British society

 

 

Prof. Martin Innes writes for The Conversation

The home secretary, Theresa May, has announced a major independent inquiry into claims that for decades, accusations and evidence of child abuse were dismissed, ignored and mishandled by many of Britain’s most important institutions.

She also announced a review of the way the Home Office handled sexual abuse allegations passed to it between 1979 and 1995 – including those submitted by MP Geoffrey Dickens to the then home secretary Leon Brittan.

The allegations of organised historic sexual abuse of children by MPs and peers are already sending huge shockwaves through the British establishment; they point to abuses and cover-ups in the care system and the civil service, among others, and have revived long-dormant inquiries into alleged child abuse by powerful figures at the Elm Guest House in Barnes in the early 1980s.

CLICK HERE TO READ FULL ARTICLE

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BBC Radio Wales: Eye on Wales - Violent Radicalisation feat. Martin Innes

The emergence of an online recruitment film, apparently for the Sunni militant group ISIS, featuring two men from Cardiff has prompted questions about radicalisation and extremism in the city. 

ISIS is a hard-line group that's been among those fighting government forces in Syria. In recent weeks it has pushed into large areas of northern Iraq, leaving sectarian slaughter in its wake.

It's estimated that between four and five hundred Britons have gone to Syria. As well as their families' fear for their safety, there's a broader concern that some of them may bring a commitment to extremist violence home with them if they return. 

In a special edition of Eye on Wales Felicity Evans brings together a panel of experts to ask how the radicalisation of young men from Cardiff and elsewhere happens and how it can be addressed.

Contributors include: Haras Rafiq of the counter-extremism think tank, the Quilliam Foundation; Shahien Taj, founder and executive director of the Henna Foundation which works to strengthen families within the Muslim community; and Professor Martin Innes, director of Cardiff University's Police Science Institute, who has researched radicalisation in some cities in England.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN

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International PhD Studentship in Criminology Opportunity

Applications are being sought for a prestigious, full-time PhD Studentship in Criminology, to be based in the Cardiff School of Social Sciences at Cardiff University, to begin in October 2014.

The Cardiff School of Social Sciences is pleased to announce the launch of a new International PhD Studentship for 2014 and welcomes applications from prospective candidates. The studentship will cover the full cost of overseas fees and a £7000 annual contribution to living expenses.

The studentship will be in partnership with the Universities' Police Science Institute and will build upon the Institute's world leading work in conducting research to inform policing policy and practice development. In light of these objectives, we are seeking to fund work in respect of a wide range of activities, including:

  • Community and Neighbourhood Policing;
  • Comparative studies of the police role in counter-terrorism;
  • New forms of crime prevention;
  • New technologies of crime control.

The Studentship will be awarded to successful applicants who fulfil the following criteria:

  1. The subject of the proposed PhD research must fall within the areas highlighted above.
  2. We are especially interested in funding work with an international comparative dimension.
  3. A first class undergraduate and/or postgraduate qualification in an area relevant to the focus of the studentship.

To Apply or for further information click here

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Presentations from UPSI's Evidence Based Policing in Wales Conference Available to Download

On 19th May 2014 the Universities' Police Science Institute hosted a conference bringing together leading policy-makers, senior police officers and academics from across Wales to explore Evidence Based Policing in Wales. Speakers at the event included Chief Constable Peter Vaughan of South Wales Police and Police and Crime Commissioners Rt hon Alun Michael and Christopher Salmon. 

Presentations from the event are now available to download on the links below:

Prof. Colin Rogers | Learning from Practice

Dr. Helen Innes | Managing Anti-social behaviour in a Time of Austerity in Wales

Prof. Kevin Haines | Police Legitimacy: A Young People's Perspective

Kate Williams | Crime in Rural Communities

Nerys Thomas | Evidence Based Policing

Please sign up to our mailing list to be kept informed of future events here

 

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Read preview of Martin Innes' new book: Signal Crimes. Social Reactions to Crime, Disorder and Social Control

"One of the most eagerly anticipated criminological publications" Prof. Tim Newburn, London School of Economics

"It is difficult to capture just how important this work is.. It is a vital text" Prof. Sir Anthony Bottoms, University of Cambridge

"Professor Innes has developed a seminal body of work." - Sir Denis O'Connor, formerly Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary, 2008-2012

"Nothing short of a new framework for understanding the social meaning of crime and criminal justice." Professor Jonathan Simon, University of California, Berkeley

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO PRE-ORDER A COPY

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Police Oracle Article on UPSI ASB Wales Report

The Universities Police Science Institute has discovered that many victims of anti-social behaviour are repeat callers.

A report into antisocial behaviour in Wales has shown that a high proportion of victims are vulnerable repeat callers. The Universities’ Police Science Institute analysed the largest ever sample survey of Anti-social Behaviour (ASB) victims...

Read More: www.policeoracle.com/news/Miscellaneous/2014/May/21/Police-need-to-support-victims-of-anti-social-behaviour-_82549.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

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Signal Crimes: Social Reactions to Crime, Disorder and Control - New Book from Martin Innes, Oxford University Press

SIGNAL CRIMES

SOCIAL REACTIONS TO CRIME, DISORDER, AND CONTROL

Martin Innes

224 pages | 234x156mm

978-0-19-968447-2 | Paperback | June 2014 (estimated)

How do individuals, communities, and institutions react to crime, disorder, and social control events? How do such incidents shape the contours of social order and the make-up of society? Why do some crimes and disorders matter more than others in influencing how we think, feel, and act about our security? These are the questions that lie at the heart of Signal Crimes: Social Reactions to Crime, Disorder, and Control.

"One of the most eagerly anticipated criminological publications" Prof. Tim Newburn, London School of Economics

"It is difficult to capture just how important this work is.. It is a vital text" Prof. Sir Anthony Bottoms, University of Cambridge

"Professor Innes has developed a seminal body of work." - Sir Denis O'Connor, formerly Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary, 2008-2012

"Nothing short of a new framework for understanding the social meaning of crime and criminal justice." Professor Jonathan Simon, University of California, Berkeley

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO PRE-ORDER A COPY

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Managing Anti-social behaviour in a time of Austerity in Wales, New Report Released

The Universities’ Police Science Institute have analysed the largest ever sample survey of Anti-social Behaviour victims in Wales for a new report ‘Managing Anti-Social Behaviour in a Time of Austerity in Wales’. The study follows on from a UK wide review of ASB conducted for Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (link to report in notes to editor) and is based on a MORI survey of victims of ASB across the four forces in Wales during a one-month period in 2011. 

The report is being launched today (19-May-14) at UPSI's conference on Evidence Based Policing in Wales with guest speakers Rt Hon Alun Michael PCC, Chief Constable Peter Vaughan of South Wales Police and Christopher Salmon PCC. 

The report found that a high proportion of victims who contact the police are repeat callers and suffer some identifiable vulnerability.

A third of all victims in Wales experienced intimidation or repercussions as a direct result of reporting ASB to the police. Deprivation drives up the volume of ASB calls to the police and callers from highly deprived areas are more likely to be vulnerable victims.

The highest volume of calls to the police about ASB are from home owners but repeat and vulnerable victims are concentrated in Social housing in Wales.

Unless a co-ordinated approach is adopted to help protect and safeguard vulnerable victims, there is a real risk that they will not report ASB to the police in the future.

The Police have higher victim satisfaction than other agencies and should lead a multi-agency response partnering with social housing landlords and associations; sharing tools to define and assess ASB in a consistent way. 

The report is available to read in full above or click here to download

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Evidence Based Policing in Wales Conference 19-May Agenda

Policing policy and practice development is being challenged by a combination of economic, political and social forces. UPSI are holding a conference to bring together leading policy-makers, senior police officers and academics from across Wales to explore how evidence-based ways of working are helping to tackle these challenges and what the opportunities for the future might be.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD FULL AGENDA

Confirmed speakers include:
Chief Constable Peter Vaughan, South Wales Police
Rt Hon Alun Michael, Police & Crime Commissioner South Wales
Christopher Salmon, Police & Crime Commissioner Dyfed-Powys Police


The conference will take place on 19th May 2014 from 10am to 4pm, Cardiff University School of Social Sciences

Click Here to Register *Please note places are limited and it is advisable to book early

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Event: Data Driven Methods for understanding Below the Radar Activity in the ‘Social Economy’

In March 2014 Nesta awarded five research grants to organisations exploring Data Driven Methods for understanding Below the Radar Activity in the ‘Social Economy"  (read more about the research in this blog).

NESTA are hosting an event June 11th to learn more about why this is such an interesting new field of research, how this can further value to existing research, such as the NCVO Almanac, and most importantly hear from the five projects about their ideas and what they are proposing to do.

This event will be an opportunity to learn about exciting new data driven methods for undertaking research into civil society, and will help the five grantees test their ideas and ambitions for the research. The event is organised in partnership with NCVO.

Researchers from Cardiff University's UPSI and the School of Computer Science and Informatics were one of the five projects awarded the funding and will be examining how social media such as Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, blogs and newsfeeds leads to forms of 'spontaneous community mobilisation' after major crime events focusing on case study of social media data from the murder of Lee Rigby in Woolwich 2013.

Follow the event on twitter using #DataBTR or click here for more information and to register attendance 

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NESTA Award Funding to UPSI to Research Data Driven Methods for Understanding Below the Radar Activity in the 'Social Economy'

UPSI has been awarded funding by NESTA to examine how social media leads to forms of 'spontaneous community mobilisation’ after major crime events focusing on case study of social media data from the murder of Lee Rigby in Woolwich last year. The project will use data collected from social media streams that relate to the Lee Rigby incident including Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, blogs and newsfeeds since the event in 2013. Data will be analysed using a suite of innovative tools known as Sentinel which identifies, analyses and collects information on Who, What, When, Where and Why in social media sources to identify key events surround the murder of Lee Rigby and the subsequent community actions taken.

Click here for further information

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Evidence Based Policing in Wales Conference, 19th May 2014

Policing policy and practice development is being challenged by a combination of economic, political and social forces. UPSI are holding a conference to bring together leading policy-makers, senior police officers and academics from across Wales to explore how evidence-based ways of working are helping to tackle these challenges and what the opportunities for the future might be.

Confirmed speakers include:

Chief Constable Peter Vaughan, South Wales Police
Rt Hon Alun Michael, Police & Crime Commissioner South Wales
Christopher Salmon, Police & Crime Commissioner Dyfed-Powys Police


The conference will take place on 19th May 2014 from 10am to 4pm, Cardiff University School of Social Sciences

Click Here to Register *Please note places are limited and it is advisable to book early

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TARDIS Conference Presentations Available for Download

Cardiff University, the London Borough of Sutton and Politieacademie Netherlands recently held a project knowledge sharing and launch event for SENTINEL, (Sentiment mining of Narratives using an Extremist Lexicon) a research prototype of a social media analytics tool designed to identify extremist narratives in ‘low-level’ and ‘event’ based activity in open source public media data. The presentations from the key speakers of the event are now available to download. Please click on each link below. 

Prof Martin Innes, Universities' Police Science Institute 

Dr. Colin Roberts, Universities' Police Science Institute 

Ian Kershaw, Safer Sutton Partnership

Warren Shadbolt, Safer Sutton Partnership

Trudy Lowe, Universities' Police Science Institute 

Alun Preece, Irena Spasic, David Rogers, Cardiff University School of Computer Sciences

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Martin Innes First Academic Appointed to College of Policing Professional Committee

Professor Martin Innes has been appointed to provide academic insight on the committee which sets strategic direction on a range of national policing issues, including the College's work to develop national standards, policy and practice. 

Professor Innes will take up his position at the next meeting of the committee on May 7, 2014.

In making the announcement today, Director of Knowledge, Research and Education Rachel Tuffin, said:

“I am delighted to announce the appointment of our first ever academic member to the professional committee.  The College wants to partner with people from both inside and outside policing who can offer valuable expertise and Martin brings a wealth of experience to the service.  His long career working in research will add tremendous value to officers and staff as we put evidence-based policing at the heart of the College’s standards.”

Professor Innes, who is also the Director of the Cardiff-based Universities’ Police Science Institute (UPSI) said:

"The College of Policing has an ambitious and challenging agenda.  As the forum responsible for formulating national strategy, policy and guidance for the police service, it is vital that the College's professional committee can draw on the best available scientific evidence. 

“I look forward to using my expertise to help the College shape this work with research evidence of what works to provide officers and staff with the best information to help them cut crime and keep the public safe."

Professor Innes was appointed Director of UPSI in 2007 and has published more than 50 articles about crime and justice in areas such as homicide, intelligence and neighbourhood policing.  

Two further academic advisors to the College of Policing professional committee will be appointed in due course.

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Martin Innes on ITV: Major public inquiry needed into police conduct

Martin Innes, Professor of Police Science at Cardiff University, told ITV News that a single major public inquiry is needed, due to to a number of continuing investigations into policing.

He was speaking after the Home Secretary Theresa May revealed possible links between an allegedly corrupt police officer involved in the investigation into the murder of teenager Stephen Lawrence, and the investigation into the murder of a Welsh private investigator.

Daniel Morgan was found dead in the car park of a London pub in 1987.

Prof Innes told our Correspondent Rob Osborne: "There must be a tipping point where you decide that we can't sustain this drip-drip-drip of corrosive allegations of misconduct."

"If these allegations do start to stack up, you will need a Royal Commission on the police, to address these issues, diagnose what the causes are, and put in place some sort of remedies to stop the problem happening again."

CLICK HERE TO VIEW VIDEO

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Martin Innes quoted in Michael Engels' Financial Times article on Police & Crime Commissioners

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Malpas Cricket Club, on the outskirts of Newport in South Wales, is not especially famous in the annals of the game; nor is its red-brick pavilion. Yet it occupies a strange footnote in British political history. In November 2012, the government held an election here and nobody came.
The pavilion was being used as a local polling station: for 14 hours, council officials sat and waited for voters to turn up and cast their ballots for a police and crime commissioner. Not one appeared.

This extreme example became a symbol for what was seen as a pointless election for an official with no obvious purpose. Elsewhere, voters did turn up: a few of them. The turnout nationally was just over 15 per cent, the lowest ever recorded. That, however, was enough to install 41 new public servants, paid between £65,000 and £100,000 (depending on the size of the patch), to oversee the country’s constabularies, whereupon voters’ indifference rapidly turned to contempt.

Some of the commissioners soon gained a reputation for low-level malfeasance, starting with self-aggrandising interference. Within hours of Avon and Somerset’s commissioner being sworn in, the chief constable resigned after being told to reapply for his own job. Then came the allegations of greed as some newcomers tried to hold on to their old posts as well. Next was cronyism as allies, comrades and chums were handed well-paid jobs as deputies and assistants in what looked like overstaffed private offices. The image has stuck. There is no known case of get-out-of-jail-free cards being offered so speeding motorists can inform busybody officers “I’m a personal friend of the police and crime commissioner”. But it feels like only a matter of time. Public distaste appears to be matched by a sullen resentment from police of all ranks.

CLICK HERE TO READ FULL ARTICLE

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European Commission TaRDiS Project Information Sharing and Sentinel Launch Event

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Cardiff University, the London Borough of Sutton and Politie Academie Netherlands invite you to a project information sharing and launch event for SENTINEL, (Sentiment mining of Narratives using an Extremist Lexicon) a research prototype of a social media analytics tool designed to identify extremist narratives in ‘low-level’ and ‘event’ based activity in open source public media data. This event is open to Government, industry, academia and law enforcement agencies.

The event will consist of a conference and an exhibition with plenty of opportunity to network. The lead partner, Safer Sutton, London Borough of Sutton will introduce the work of the programme. Speakers from School of Computer Science, Politie Academie Netherlands and the Universities’ Police Science Institute (UPSI) will contribute. This will be an unclassified event. 

CLICK HERE FOR FULL INFORMATION AND TO BOOK YOUR PLACE

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Martin Innes to open Policy Exchange event 'The New Bill: How innovation can drive smart policing' 21/01/14

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Policy Exchange recently published a report, Rebooting the PC, which examined how to hardwire innovation into the structures and cultures of policing. It explored why policing can be culturally and institutionally resistant to innovation, identified the ‘engines of innovation’ which can sometimes break through this inertia and demonstrated why embedding processes of innovation should be a deliberate goal of policy.

Since the publication of the report, the Home Office has announced the creation of a £50 million Innovation Fund for police forces and Police and Crime Commissioners.

This seminar being held on 21st January 2014 will bring together Police and Crime Commissioners, Chief Constables, Chief Fire Officers, national policymakers, industry representatives and academics to  review the police innovation landscape and discuss how to create the networks, relationships and cultures necessary to spread innovation to  deliver the necessary and sustainable change. 

It will discuss the potential make-up, operation and financing of new Hubs for Innovation in Policing (HIPs) – which we recommended be set up to embed a process of innovation and change in policing.

Read the full Rebooting the PC report below:

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