Professor Lawrence Sherman

Independent member of the College of Policing Board

Lawrence W Sherman is Director of the Police Executive Programme and the Institute of Criminology at Cambridge University, where he is also the Wolfson Professor of Criminology.

Author in 1998 of the first treatise on evidence-based policing, Lawrence began his career in police research in the New York City Police Department, where he was a civilian analyst in the Office of the Police Commissioner for two years. Since then he has conducted field research and experiments in more than 40 police agencies in the USA, the UK and Australia. In 1981-3 he led the Minneapolis Domestic Violence Experiment, the first controlled trial in police discretion to arrest for any offence. He has since led experiments showing the effectiveness of police patrols in high-crime hot spots, of stop and search patrols in high-gun-crime areas, and of covert surveillance of serious offenders recently released from prison. From 2001-2005 he directed the Justice Research Consortium-UK, which completed seven controlled experiments in police-led restorative justice in UK agencies. As Director of the Jerry Lee Centre for Experimental Criminology at Cambridge, he works in partnership with 10 different police experiments under way in the UK and the USA. In 2010 he was elected Honorary President of the Society of Evidence-Based Policing.

Lawrence has served as a lecturer for and consultant to the FBI National Academy, as well as to Bramshill Police College, the Canadian Police College, the Dutch Police College, the Swedish Police College, the Australian Institute of Police Management, the Indian National Police Academy, the People's Police Academy of Vietnam, and the National Police Universities of both the People's Republic of China and Taiwan, as well as many other police training and education institutions in Europe, the US and Asia.

His research has received prizes and medals from six scientific societies, and he has been elected President of the American and International Societies of Criminology. He was awarded the 2011 Benjamin Franklin Gold Medal by the Royal Society of Arts, upon the presentation of his lecture on 'Professional Policing and Liberal Democracy'.

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