Visions of Law Enforcement Technology in the Period 2024-2034

Visions of Law Enforcement Technology in the Period 2024-2034


RAND Corporation


Richard Silberglitt, Brian G. Chow, John S. Hollywood, Dulani Woods, Mikhail Zaydman, and Brian A. Jackson

This report describes the results of the Law Enforcement Futuring Workshop, which was held at RAND's Washington Office in Arlington, Virginia, from July 22 to 25, 2014. The objective of this workshop was to identify high-priority technology needs for law enforcement based on consideration of current and future trends in society, technology, and law enforcement over a ten- to 20-year time period. During the workshop, participants developed sets of future scenarios, constructed pathways from the present to alternative futures, and considered how law enforcement use of technology might affect these pathways. They then identified technology needs (including training and changes in policies or practice) that, if addressed, could enable pathways to desirable futures or prevent or mitigate the effects of pathways to undesirable futures. On the final day of the workshop, the technology needs were prioritized using a Delphi method. The output of this workshop described in the report included ten future scenarios and 30 technology needs. The technology needs fell into three general categories — technology-related knowledge and practice, information sharing and use, and technological research and development — and were placed into three priority tiers.

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