Resource Allocation Processes in Policing in Great Britain Nuffield College has appointed Dr. Anika Ludwig as a Postdoctoral Research Officer to contribute to a project on resource allocation processes in policing in Great Britain. This appointment is funded by the College’s G. S. Pollard Memorial Bursary, which was established from a generous donation from the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). The research project is hosted by the College’s newly formed Gwilym Gibbon Unit for Public Policy Research, which is directed by Professor Iain McLean. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: RESOURCE ALLOCATION PROCESSES IN POLICING IN GREAT BRITAIN In total, the 43 Policing areas in England and Wales spend over £11 billion a year. This can be analysed in subjective or objective terms using nationally compiled data. The research to be undertaken in this project will be targeted at advising stakeholders ahead of the Spending Review expected in 2017. The aim is to evaluate the decision making processes used by Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC) and Chief Constables, to decide how budgets are allocated to specific programmes and geographical areas across all the UK’s territorial police forces (except Northern Ireland). Comparisons will also be carried out against Police Scotland and the British Transport Police. The research will also explore whether there are systematic differences between forces and whether decisions are made based on evidence or professional experience. The project will be carried out in four stages:
  • A review of the resource allocation processes currently used within the Police and Community Safety sector.
  • The factors, measures and evidence which are taken into account
  • An evaluation of the processes which are used in other sectors, and a consideration of their applicability within Policing and Community Safety.
    • The decision making process itself and who is involved in making the decisions; the level of formality in the process
    • The differences between how the process operates at Force or Divisional level, and at local/front line level.
    • The level of technical and economic assessment – to what extent do decision makers assess the costs and benefits of alternative choices
    • The techniques and evidence bases which are used
    • The benchmarks which are set, against which to measure performance and to trigger review.
  • The development of a set of principles for an enhanced arrangement, taking into account the specific challenges within the Police and Community Safety sector.
  • The provision of advice on how guidance material might be produced about the techniques of resource allocation, and making recommendations as to how awareness and knowledge might best be shared across the Service.
Expected outcomes
  • An evaluation of the technical robustness of the processes for resource allocation
  • Design principles for modelling and assessment techniques which will enable PCC and Chief Constables to make informed policy choices and decisions on the allocation of resources.
Slide of first advisory board meeting of the project held on 16-May-2016 can be found here.