Journal Article

Improving the Explanatory Content of Analysis Products using Hypothesis Testing

Spencer Chainey

in Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice

Volume 6, issue 2, pages 108-121
Published in print June 2012 | ISSN: 1752-4512
Published online March 2012 | e-ISSN: 1752-4520 | DOI:
Improving the Explanatory Content of Analysis Products using Hypothesis Testing

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Analysis is an integral part of police and public safety decision making—if a crime problem is clearly understood, it can help identify the solutions that will most likely be effective. Although the profile of analysis has been raised in recent years, its routine production has often resulted in many analysis products often offering only a descriptive presentation of the problem that is being examined, rather than the one that is explanatory in its tone. In this article, we propose the use of a hypothesis testing methodology to improve the explanatory content of crime and intelligence analysis, and illustrate its use with an example of residential burglary in Oldham, Greater Manchester. We argue that this approach produces analytical products that are richer in explanatory and interpretative substance, helps to improve commissioning dialogue, and generates results that help to more specifically identify how a crime problem can be tackled.

Journal Article.  7313 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Policing

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