PERF Report Details Changes in Police Response to Active Shooter Incidents


PERF and BJA Release 2 Reports Defining Legitimacy and Procedural Justice in Policing


PERF and the U.S. Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) have released two reports on an important development in policing: the growing recognition of the concepts of legitimacy and procedural justice.

In the first report, “Legitimacy and Procedural Justice: A New Element of Police Leadership,” Yale Law Prof. Tom Tyler provides specific definitions of these terms, and summarizes research studies that demonstrate why legitimacy and procedural justice are important to the future success of police agencies.

In short, “legitimacy” refers to the judgments that community members make about whether they have trust and confidence in their police, whether they are willing to defer to the law and to police authority, and whether they believe that police actions in their community are morally justified and appropriate. “Procedural justice” can be seen as a way to achieve legitimacy. Police officers provide procedural justice when do their jobs fairly and neutrally, treat community members with respect, and give people a chance to explain their situation or tell their side of the story.

The second PERF/BJA report, “Legitimacy and Procedural Justice: The New Orleans Case Study,” describes how New Orleans Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas is incorporating the concepts of legitimacy and procedural justice in his efforts to reform the New Orleans Police Department.

Click on the report titles above to see the full PERF/BJA reports.


PERF Seeking to Hire a Research Assistant


We are looking for an exceptional candidate to join the PERF team as a Research Associate. Please click on the headline for more information.


PERF and COPS Office to Host Webinar on Performance Management in Policing


On Tuesday, February 25 at 2 p.m. EST, the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) and the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (the COPS Office) will host an interactive webinar on Establishing Procedural Justice Within Police Organizations:  Performance Management for First Line Supervisors in Community Policing Agencies.

PERF has been reviewing performance management approaches from the public and private sectors to identify promising practices that are based on the concept of procedural justice to reinforce community policing.  The purpose of this project is to establish a transparent system of performance management that reinforces community policing in the field through a procedural justice approach.  

The Webinar will provide a forum for PERF to present its preliminary findings and recommendations for discussion and feedback.  Police executives are encouraged to participate in this 60-minute Webinar to learn about PERF’s findings, and to offer their comments and questions.  The discussion and feedback generated during this event will help PERF and the COPS Office to refine the approach prior to finalizing the recommendations and practices to include in the project’s final executive guidebook. 

Please click here to register for this Webinar.

To learn more about this Webinar or this project, please click here or contact Shannon Branly at .


Save the Date: 2014 PERF Annual Meeting


The Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), Major Cities Chiefs Association (MCCA) and the National Executive Institute Associates (NEIA) are teaming up this year for 2014's Annual Meeting, to be held May 28-30 in San Francisco. The Annual Meeting will be a joint effort by all three organizations. Registration will be held on PERF and MCCA's websites, and all who register will be welcome to attend all sessions and events. Click on the headline above for more information.


Senior Management Institute for Police


There will be THREE SMIP Sessions in 2014:

  • Session 56: June 1-19, 2014
  • Session 57: June 8-26, 2014
  • Session 58: July 13-31, 2014

Click on the headline above for more information.


PERF Plays Role in Unprecedented Middle East Policing Project


On August 21, Israeli Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino and Palestinian Police Major General Hazem Atallah announced that for 18 months they have been holding unprecedented meetings to discuss joint projects on public safety issues in the Middle East. PERF and the nation of Jordan played a key role in facilitating these meetings. Jordan's Minister of the Interior Hussein Al-Majali (formerly Director General of Public Security) was involved from the first days of the initiative, and the new Public Safety Director Tawfiq Tawalbeh is continuing Jordan's leadership role. Also supporting the initiative were PERF President and Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis, Retired Minneapolis Police Chief Tim Dolan, Chief Terry Gainer, U.S. Senate Sergeant at Arms, Las Vegas Sheriff Douglas Gillespie, NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly, and PERF Executive Director Chuck Wexler. A CBS News story about this project can be seen at Click on the headline above for additional news stories about this Middle East initiative.


PERF and COPS Office Release Report on Police Use of Social Media


PERF and the Office of Community Orientedalt Policing Services have released "Social Media and Tactical Considerations for Law Enforcement," a 54-page report that explores the ways in which police are using social media. Many departments are using social media such at Facebook and Twitter to disseminate information to the public about crime issues and police activities. The report also provides information about the use of social media for other purposes, including preventing, responding to, and investigating crimes, riots, and "flash mob" situations. Click on the cover to the right to view the full report.



PERF Releases Report on Compstat Systems


PERF's new report, "Compstat: Itsalt Origins, Evolution, and Future in Law Enforcement Agencies," traces how Compstat came into being, how it changed as it spread to hundreds of police agencies across the country, and where it's headed for the future. Begun 20 years ago in New York City, Compstat has become a part of the institutional DNA of policing. With support from the Bureau of Justice Assistance, PERF launched a project to assess how this happened. We conducted a survey of law enforcement agencies about their Compstat systems, and we held a national conference in which police executives and other experts described their experiences with Compstat. Then PERF conducted site visits in law enforcement agencies across the country, observing Compstat meetings and interviewing local officials. We found that law enforcement agencies have taken Compstat in different directions and to new levels of performance since it was first developed. Few policing innovations have been more transformative than Compstat. Compstat changed how police view crime problems. Instead of merely responding to crimes after they are committed, police expanded their mission to focus on preventing the next crime. Compstat helps to achieve that mission. Click on the cover to the right to view the full report.


PERF Releases Report on Justice Department Investigations of Local Police Agencies


PERF's new Critical Issues in altPolicing report, "Civil Rights Investigations of Local Police: Lessons Learned," provides new information about investigations of local police departments by the U.S. Justice Department's Civil Rights Division. PERF conducted research on the consent decrees that have been implemented over nearly 20 years, and convened a meeting of officials from cities that have experienced consent decrees, along with members of the DOJ Special Litigation Section. The result is this document, which details the substantive issues - for example, which aspects of policing tend to trigger DOJ investigations - and the procedural issues, such as how DOJ and local officials negotiate reform packages and how they decide when police departments have achieved compliance with the requirements. This report provides the information police departments need to ensure they have the policies, training, and management and supervision systems to ensure a high level of Constitutionally sound policing. Click on the cover to the right to view the full report.


PERF Releases Report on Eyewitness Identification Procedures


In a project supported by the National Institute of Justice, PERF conducted a national assessment of the state of the field regarding eyewitness identification procedures used by law enforcement agencies. The survey, the first of its kind, gauges the extent to which law enforcement agencies have implemented guidelines issued by NIJ in 1999 that were designed to increase the reliability of eyewitness identifications.

Eyewitness identifications can be compelling evidence in court.  However, there has been a growing recognition that eyewitness identifications can be unreliable, based in part on the growing number of exonerations of persons who were convicted of crimes due to faulty eyewitness identifications. 

PERF's survey found that law enforcement agencies nationwide have made some progress in implementing the NIJ guidelines for eyewitness identification procedures. However, most law enforcement agencies have not implemented the full range of NIJ guidelines. Click on the headline above to view the full report.