East Midlands Police & Crime Research & Innovation

Our purpose

Our purpose is to improve policing practice – to make it more effective and cut crime -by drawing upon the best research and innovation ideas. We do this by bringing together policing professionals with academic researchers to:-

  • drive research and innovation with a policing purpose, focusing on policing priorities
  • ensure all of the police forces of the EM region are involved and benefit, and academic researchers across disciplines and institutions are involved in order to optimise the benefits to regional policing practice
  • work together to co-problematise and co-produce high impact research -i.e. research that is useful and applicable to policing practice – see our impact measuring guide here:-  https://www.empac.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/EMPAC-IMPACT-CAPACITY-RATING.pdf.

We encourage a place for professional practice and academic research to come together for a team effort. As a region, the East Midlands offers a strong test bed for investment in policing research, given the potential for transferability and replication across other policing regions of the country. Our aspiration is to be the most progressive and innovative policing region in the country.

Our approach

EMPAC is not a single, separate entity, but a collaboration across the region’s policing structures and research institutions. EMPAC offers a strong progressive opportunity for policing and researchers to work together, where joint working will produce better outcomes than either working alone. We seek an alignment wherever possible of researcher interest with policing priorities – creating a win / win that in turn benefits the public by improving policing services.

Alignment can take various forms – such as via a self-funded PhD candidate, or a professional researcher with allocated research and scholarly time, who shares an interest with policing over a priority topic. For example, Dr Chloe Holloway, at the University of Nottingham, worked with Inspector Duncan Collins to produce groundbreaking, high impact research used to inform the development of new custody suite design – see more here:-   


EMPAC is not a funding body but will act as a bidding partner for external research grant applications. We are keen to progress working in partnership to bring in fresh research investment to our region – just as, for example, the University of Leicester have done recently, to tackle violence (see further below). 

Respecting the importance and sensitivity of policing within society, research data arising from Police EMPAC members partners involvement will be owned by the Police, and will not be not be used or disseminated without explicit Police permission (e.g. a specific jointly agreed data processing contract or data protection agreement).

To ensure a collaborative approach to benefit the East Midlands region (and beyond) strategic EMPAC leads will hold research to account by openly asking questions such as:-

  • Is the research tackling an agreed priority issue for policing (i.e. through alignment to Police and Crime Plans)?
  • Is everyone involved who could / should contribute, to utilise a team approach?
  • Are key stakeholders across the region involved / invited to ensure optimum insight, scrutiny, commissioning, operational delivery and public benefit?
  • Is research ‘shining a light’ in the pursuance of truth – ‘warts and all’ – to pursue authentic reflective insight (not just transactional ‘quick fixes’ / validation / retrospective justification)
  • Is the research contributing strategically towards the long-term organisational development of policing and the Police and Crime Plans (which can include critically reviewing current practice)?
  • Is co-problematising and co-production of research authentically embedded and progressive, i.e.
    • are operational and academic leads jointly facilitating open, safe, inclusive insight, critical reflection and challenge;
    • is the approach grounded in operational applicability whilst balanced within ethical, non-partisan, inductive approaches that not only explore ‘what is’, and why,  but also ‘what if’, to drive innovation and enterprise in policing?
  • Are operational and academic leads ensuring two-way communication with key stakeholders (i.e. through openly publicising updates on the EMPAC web, through our media partner Police Professional or, where more appropriate, via internal reports) to ensure transparency, accountability, continuity, inclusivity and dissemination?

Our proactive priorities for policing research and innovation

The proactive targeted priorities for policing are jointly led by an operational and academic lead, as a joined-up team effort, on behalf of the region. The current priorities are:-

  • Force Management Statements: Understanding Demand, led by Superintendent Mark Housley (Lincolnshire Police), Dr Rowena Hill (Nottingham Trent University), Kate Hemstock (Derbyshire Constabulary) and Professor Peter Kawalek (Loughbough University).

You can contact Mark at mark.housley@lincs.pnn.police.uk; Rowena at rowena.hill@ntu.ac.uk. ; Kate at kate.hemstock@derbyshire.police.uk; and Peter at p.kawalek@lboro.ac.uk.

Force Management Statement (FMS) Demand research interests include going beyond the refinement and efficiency of triage and reactive policing, taking a more epidemiological approach, to understand the causes of crime rather than focus just on law enforcement responses to potential symptoms. There is also attention given to place-based work, predictive modelling using big data and early intervention and prevention of crime. The FMS Demand research embeds itself upon the existing enabling legislation of Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998. The research seeks to explore the evidence base of partnership and holistic approaches, and to that end this research workstream is multi-agency based. 

  • Serious Organised Crime (SOC), led by Deputy Chief Constable Paul Gibson (East Midlands Special operations Unit) and Professor Dave Walsh (De Montfort University)

You can contact Dave at dave.walsh@dmu.ac.uk.

SOC research interests include linking national and international crime groups; the use of digital technologies to recruit, participate in crime, and enable the proceeds of crime, including money laundering; understanding emergent business markets and models of organised crime groups (OCGs); how to better evaluate the effectiveness of prevention, disruption and counter measures; how to prevent individuals and communities becoming vulnerable to OCG recruitment or targeting; and how to enable a more  agile law enforcement mindset to counter the entrepreneurial nature of SOC.

  • Reducing Violent Crime. The University of Leicester have secured funding from the Economic and Social research Council (ESRC) to work with policing to reduce violent crime. 

This workstream is led by Associate Professor Matt Hopkins, Dr Claire Davis and Dr Keith Floyd, working with representatives from policing, and has developed a Violence Reduction Information Network (VRIN) – you can read more about the ongoing work here:- https://www.empac.org.uk/update-on-violence-reduction-research/ .

Dr Keith Floyd can be contacted at kf154@le.ac.uk.

EMPAC welcomes other additional research workstreams which are of interest to any academic researcher(s) and offers a beneficial impact to East Midlands policing. EMPAC welcomes any interest in scoping external research bid funding (such as ESRC). Researchers are invited to discuss their thoughts with EMPAC concerning the relevance of proposed research to policing, on a case by case basis.

The 2020 strategic summit presentation is viewable here:- https://www.empac.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/EMPAC-strategic-partners-2020.pptx

EMPAC has a strong media partner in Policing Professional, the UK’s largest selling policing publication with both a print and digital regular reach of 50,000 readers, to help with communicating ideas for practitioners to use in the workplace. EMPAC doesn’t just want to encourage good ideas it wants to see them used!

Contact us

EMPAC’s regional manager is Dr John Coxhead and there are strategic leads who represent the East Midlands Police and Crime Commissioners and  Chief Constables. 

EMPAC Research Partnership Manager:-


Telephone 07470 181050

EMPAC Office Administration:-


Telephone 0116 2222222, extension 2066

East Midlands Regional Collaboration:


The Single Point of Contacts (SPOCs) for each member organisation are:

Derbyshire – Supt  Jed Keen 

Leicestershire – C/Insp Andrew Parkes / Graham Pickering

Lincolnshire – T/ACC Chris Davison

Northamptonshire – Sarah Calvert / Nicole Plummer

Nottinghamshire – DCI Neil Humphris

EMSOU – Laura Hallam 

De Montfort University – Professor Rob Canton / Professor Dave Walsh

University of Derby – Tony Blockley

University of Leicester – Associate Professor Matt Hopkins / Dr Claire Davis

University of Lincoln – Dr  Carina OReilly / Dr Kate Strudwick 

Loughborough University – Professor Peter Kawalek

University of Northampton – Associate Professor Matthew Callender / Dave Hill

Nottingham Trent University – Professor Cillian Ryan / Dr Rowena Hill / Associate Professor Andy Newton

University of Nottingham – Professor Todd Landman / Associate Professor Kerry Clamp

Regional Police and Crime Plan overview

Each PCC’s currently published Police and Crime Plan is also linked here as well to give you an easy access yet detailed picture of the local crime analysis behind the identified priorities. These plans will be refreshed, following PCC elections on 6th May 2021.






Leicestershire Police-and-Crime-Plan-2017-2021