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Making sense in proactive police work

Conference paper
Authors Urban Nuldén
Erik Borglund
Published in IRIS31 - The 31st Information Systems Research Seminar in Scandinavia
Publication year 2008
Published at Department of Applied Information Technology (GU)
Language en
Subject categories Informatics


Swedish police has changed from a mainly reactive approach to a more proactive. Information technology has been developed to aid police in strategic decision making. However, IT have not yet been applied in an operational police practice to increase the ability of the police officers possibility to make sense of situations they are confronted with. The purpose of this paper is first to investigate how sensemaking theory can conceptualise and describe the characteristics of police practice, secondly to contribute with knowledge of how police officers make sense in proactive police work. The paper is based on a four-year period of studying operational police practice. Four candidate categories of police officers sensemaking have been identified: 1. Action, without action no sensemaking occurs. 2. Information, police officers search and retrieve information to gain knowledge. 3. Experience, the police officers experience together with their retrieved information help the officers to make sense of situations. 4. Collaboration, in collaboration with colleagues’, police officers together try to make sense of different situations. Sensemaking theory have based upon collected empirical data indicated to be an applicable theory to describe the variations and complexity in police practice.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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