2015 CEPOL European Police Research & Science Conference

Evidence-based policing

New perspectives of cooperation between practice, education and police science

5-8 October 2015

Venue: Edificio-sede Polícia Judiciária, Lisbon (Portugal)

  1. Theme
  2. Outcomes
  3. Presentations
  4. Organisation
  5. Venue


Ideas on “evidence-based” policing strategies and tactics have gained a foot­hold in Europe and are drawing growing attention in the international discussion on policing. If “evidence-based” is understood as looking more seriously at the application of sound scientific methods to achieve practical results, police education and training is certainly called upon to support and encompass this approach. National police colleges or universities, for exam­ple, are increasingly encouraging and supporting empirical research as the backbone of Police Science Master and PhD theses.

This being a clear trend internationally, the development and progress of sound scientific research informing and shaping police practice or education varies across countries and forces in Europe and elsewhere – what’s high on the agenda in one country can be found to be mostly neglected in the next. The conference addressed the concept, chances and possible limitations of “evidence-based policing” in an open European forum by putting the following aspects on the agenda:

  • Evidence-based policing theory and methodology.
  • Epistemological issues involved in evidence-based policing and police-led research.
  • The role of the European Commission and European agencies in driving transnational evidence-based policing.
  • Current status of the use of research evidence and future research road-maps concerning the policing of terrorism, cybercrime, trafficking in human beings, trans­national organised crime, general crime prevention and investigation, sexual offences, intimate partner violence; and concerning police training, management and performance evaluation, police ethics, new policing technologies and special investigation methods, as well as forensics.
  • What works and really matters in policing.


International and European scholars from academia, police scientists, researchers, lecturers and trainers, as well as senior police officers, presented and discussed 76 papers. Plenary sessions (3), parallel sessions (19) and workshops (2) served as lively forums for the presentation and discussion of research findings, as well as future research road-maps. The conference provided par­ticipants (totalling 232 from 36 countries) with a unique opportunity to discuss theoretical and practical research problems and to network. Posters (15) were also displayed during the conference (see programme and abstracts).

As Peter Neyroud, the conference opening speaker mentioned in his final evaluation, "the CEPOL 2015 Conference provided the most comprehensive set of presentations on police research and science at any international conference on policing in 2015. It is a huge feather in CEPOL’s cap to have attracted so many scholars from across Europe and internationally. Another strength of this year's conference was the scale of the attendance from across Europe. There have only been three other conferences dedicated to policing - the Cambridge Evidence-based Policing Conference 2015, the George Mason Evidence-based Policing Conference 2015 and the SEBP 2015 conference in Manchester - with more than 200 delegates and none of these had such a wide national representation. CEPOL and the Escola de Policia Judiciaria should be very proud of this achievement. The event will have raised CEPOL’s profile and secured a strong reputation for the Policia Judiciaria and Portuguese law enforcement. For future conferences, the lesson of using an open call for papers is one to be repeated".


Keynote papers

Peter Neyroud, CBE QPM PhD (University of Cambridge)

Professor Nick Fyfe (University of Dundee) and Professor Jenny Fleming (University of Southampton)

Dr Ben Bradford (University of Oxford)

Professor Nick Fyfe (University of Dundee)

Dr Nicky Miller (Research Evidence Partnership Manager, UK College of Policing)

Professor Shane Johnson, Professor Nick Tilley and Professor Kate Bowers (University College London)

Professor Vincenzo Ruggiero (Middlesex University London)

Dr Reinhard Kreissl (Vienna Centre for Societal Security)

Professor David S. Wall (University of Leeds)

Professor Jack Greene (Northeastern University)

Professor Maurice Punch (London School of Economics and Political Science)

Open session papers

Lisa Thompson, Jyoti Belur, Tanya Le Sage, Shane Johnson, Kate Bowers, Aiden Sidebottom, Nick Tilley and Gloria Laycock (University College London Department of Security and Crime Science)

Hans Ditrich (Institute for Science and Research, Dept. I/9 – SIAK)

Dr Mary Walker (Garda Siochána Research Unit)

Dr Don Casey, Professor Phillip Burrell (London South Bank University) and Detective Chief Inspector Nick Sumner (Metropolitan Police Service)

Associate Professor Ksenija Butorac, Dr Ante Orlović and Assistant Professor Joško Sindik (Police College of Croatia)

Dr Ian K. Pepper (Department of Law, Policing and Investigation, Teesside University) and Dr Ross Wolf (Department of Criminal Justice, University of Central Florida)

Ian Hesketh (Lancashire Constabulary) and Professor Jean Hartley (Open University)

Mónica Diniz and Claudia Santa Cruz (Polícia Municipal de Lisboa)

Torben Lehberg (German Police University)

José Francisco López Sánchez (Innovation and Development Service of the Spanish National Police)

Thomas Bäck (Umeå University) and Lola Vallès (Catalan Police Academy)

Auke van Dijk and Frank Hoogewoning (Dutch National Police)

José María Blanco (Guardia Civil) and Jessica Cohen (Private sector analyst)


The conference was organised by the Escola de Polícia Judiciária (EPJ), the learning and training unit of Polícia Judiciária, on behalf of the European Police College (CEPOL).

The Escola de Polícia Judiciária was founded in 1957 and provides initial training for crime investigators, as well as specialised/continuous training courses, seminars and conferences. The main areas of training and research are: violent crime (including terrorism), organised crime (including all types of trafficking), financial crime (including corruption and tax fraud), cybercrime, urban and forest arson, forensics, crime analysis, police leadership and management, police ethics and human rights, social and communication sciences, and international and European law enforcement cooperation.

Escola de Policia Judiciaria

Polícia Judiciária is the Portuguese national crime investigation police. The mission of Polícia Judiciária, under the terms of its organic law and the Organisation of Criminal Investigation Act (LOIC), is to assist the judicial and prosecuting authorities in crime investigation, to develop and foster pre­ventive, detection and investigative actions falling within their jurisdiction, as well as other actions which Polícia Judiciária is entrusted with by the competent judicial and prosecuting authorities. Polícia Judiciária, as it exists today, was founded in 1945, after a general restructuring of the police forces in Portugal.

Policia Judiciária headquarters Polícia Judiciária

The conference organisation was supported by:

Special and important support was also rendered by:


The conference was held at the new headquarters of Polícia Judiciária in Lisbon, Portugal. This venue provided 3 auditoriums and working rooms, all of them with state-of-the-art ICT equipment.

Policia Judiciária headquarters Policia Judiciária headquarters


Office address

European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Training
1066 Budapest
Ó utca 27

Correspondence address

European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Training
1903 Budapest

Email address

Telephone: +36 1 803 8030/8031

Fax: +36 1 803 8032