The R&D Unit engages in research aimed at providing the Texas law enforcement community with cutting-edge knowledge that can improve practice and agency functioning. The ultimate aim is to improve the quality of life in communities served by law enforcement in Texas. This research is also intended to advance scientific knowledge in the areas of criminal justice and criminology. This dual purpose means diverse audiences will find our resources and services useful. These audiences include law enforcement practitioners from across several ranks and different agencies, as well as policing scholars who teach and conduct research.
The LEMIT research staff and faculty of the College of Criminal Justice are prepared to help meet agencies' research needs as they seek to respond to new challenges and improve performance. It is important that research is relevant for practice and the R&D Unit ensures that studies and research reviews generate timely and practical information. It is crucial for research to be translated into practice.
- Identify and respond to the research needs of the law enforcement community in Texas.
This entails monitoring and assessing the varied needs of law enforcement agencies and determining whether and how research might be able to help meet these needs. Topics might include aspects of organizational change and management to understanding specific crime problems in a community. The LEMIT research staff intends to facilitate research that will be meaningful to an important number of agencies across the state. LEMIT and the College of Criminal Justice have outstanding research capacities and are ready to help meet the research needs of the Texas law enforcement community.
Disseminate relevant research findings to the law enforcement community in Texas and policing scholars across the globe and aid the translation from research to practice.
The research staff will monitor research for findings that are believed to be relevant for law enforcement agencies and make these results available through the LEMIT R&D web site, conferences, and special summits organized around timely issues.
Conduct research than can enhance LEMIT's professional development mandate.
The results of LEMIT research projects will be provided to training coordinators and curriculum designers so they can determine whether and how findings can be incorporated. LEMIT research projects will be conducted with this purpose as a guide.
Sponsor forums on timely issues.
The R&D Unit will sponsor forums on pertinent topics as they emerge. These forums will provide opportunities for practitioners to share their insights with one another about important issues and for the presentation of research summaries on these issues. This will also facilitate a collaborative working environment in which practitioners and researchers can share ideas.
Facilitate grant applications for applied projects that entail scientific evaluation.
LEMIT staff and faculty in the College of Criminal Justice have extensive experience writing grant proposals. These resources are available to aid agencies when they apply for grants that entail practitioner - researcher collaborations.
Serve as a clearinghouse for law enforcement and crime data that are collected through LEMIT and the College of Criminal Justice.
These data can be used by individuals, including law enforcement practitioners, students, and faculty members, who are interested in carrying out empirical analyses to answer important questions.