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Design of a Problem Oriented Policing (POP) program in Detroit

This should be original design of a Problem Oriented Policing (POP) program field test. In other words, design a POP program that targets a specific crime problem in Detroit. Describe the program in detail (what are the independent and dependent variables, how will they be measured, and importantly of course exactly what the POP program is). Provide an overview of a plan to measure its effectiveness (e.g., an impact evaluation: How will you know that it worked?).
Thus the paper is going to require a bit of research about a specific problem that Detroit is facing crime-wise. The program can target any relevant aspect that POP programs are normally directed at, and ideally, it should harness community resources. Review examples and information on the website of the Center for Problem Oriented Policing.
Very simplified example: The police data shows that there have been five pedestrians struck by cars in the past year (one of them critically) on East Grand Boulevard (EGB) in the block just south of Gratiot Avenue. In each case, the pedestrians were crossing the street in the middle of the block, and during the day. East Grand Boulevard is a busy street with lots of commercial activity, and shops on both sides of the street. Walking up to, Gratiot to cross EGB is not convenient because it’s a long block and the lights are timed very long (it’s a six-way light system). Thus, your proposal is to install a crosswalk in the middle of the block to facilitate a safe crossing of the street. The crosswalk will have blinking yellow lights to call attention to it and will contain clear markings on the street. In addition, the city will lower the speed limit to 20 miles per hour in the four blocks south of Gratiot. (We can think about this program in two ways, either as a crime control measure [cutting down on jaywalking] or as a public safety program [reducing accidents]. Both of these are relevant police functions). Your plan will involve collecting data over the next year on reported pedestrian accidents on this stretch of EGB. You will also ask police officers on regular foot patrol on EGB to observe street crossings on this block to see if pedestrians seem to be using the crosswalk, and if drivers seem to be stopping for them when they do. This program should be more sophisticated than this, but just as focused.
Propose and justify in detail the design of the field test including the structure of the intervention, selection of the research sample, data required for measurement, and data collection sources and methods.

Creating a design proposal requires planning and a specific format for putting your ideas together. Chapter 4 of Maxfield, M., & Babbie, E. (2015). Research Methods for Criminal Justice and Criminology (7th). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning outlines this process and gives a summary overview of what the proposal should look like. The following list provides the elements of a research proposal.
1. Problem or Objective
2. Literature Review
3. Research Questions
4. Subjects for Study
5. Measurement
6. Data Collection Methods
This proposal should include all six elements but the fifth and sixth points should be in detail.

The assignment is for you to design an actual Problem Oriented Policing field test. This means that a crime problem must be identified that is suitable to testing in the field. The problem must be specific, and a solution (the program that will be field tested) must be formulated to combat the problem. Then the police (and other agencies, if needed or desired – this is typical in POP programs) have to do something specific to lessen or eliminate the problem. Then the program needs to be evaluated. Along the way data is collected to measure the problem, to implement the program, and to evaluate it.
The following is the definition of POP from the website of the Center for Problem-Oriented Policing:
“Problem-oriented policing is an approach to policing in which discrete pieces of police business (each consisting of a cluster of similar incidents, whether crime or acts of disorder, that the police are expected to handle) are subject to microscopic examination (drawing on the especially honed skills of crime analysts and the accumulated experience of operating field personnel) in hopes that what is freshly learned about each problem will lead to discovering a new and more effective strategy for dealing with it. Problem-oriented policing places a high value on new responses that are preventive in nature, that are not dependent on the use of the criminal justice system, and that engage other public agencies, the community and the private sector when their involvement has the potential for significantly contributing to the reduction of the problem. Problem-oriented policing carries a commitment to implementing the new strategy, rigorously evaluating its effectiveness, and, subsequently, reporting the results in ways that will benefit other police agencies and that will ultimately contribute to building a body of knowledge that supports the further professionalization of the police. Herman Goldstein (2001).” Retrieved from
This entire description above is important, but review the bolded material especially. To have a POP field test, there has to be a specific problem identified, and then a response to that problem that is planned, put into place, and evaluated. Obviously you won’t actually implement a field test, but you must plan one, and plan for its evaluation. The dependent and independent variables must be clearly defined, and a plan for measuring them also very clearly laid out. Look around the POP website and find examples of programs, or look at the citations I provided in an announcement about POP programs, to get an idea of what a POP program is.
The paper here raises a number of complicated questions that are important, but that seem overwhelming and unmanageable. Make it easier on yourself. Choose an aspect of the problem that you can create specific program to deal with. Then describe how you would test it and evaluate it. The more focused, the clearer the problem and the solution will be; this will make it clearer how to collect and evaluate data, and to determine if your POP program worked.

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