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SIPR Newsletter Issue 128 – December 2020

SIPR Newsletter Issue 128 - December 2020

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Introduction from Dr Liz Aston – SIPR Director

What can we say about 2020 that hasn’t already been said…..

…however, amongst the challenges, the sadness, and the difficulties, this year has showed us how resilient our amazing community of researchers and practitioners can be.

We have all adapted to news ways of living and working and continued to produce quality, valuable, and impactful work.

Looking back over the year I am proud of SIPR’s continued support of our wonderful community and the role we have played in funding excellent projects (including three outstanding studentships); maintaining crucial knowledge exchange (including webinars and a virtual event in lieu of our conference); and disseminating key research outputs (including our special pandemic briefings series and blog).

In 2020 SIPR focussed on reviewing our mission and throughout the year we worked closely with governance and leadership teams to establish a strong strategic plan for the next phase of our institute. We have set ambitious goals which will increase effectiveness and continue to support the creation of excellent, world-leading policing research in Scotland.

Like many of you we are eager to start 2021. We have some brilliant initiatives planned for the year including those mentioned below such as a new studentship round; the ‘Future of Policing’ research grants; and a schedule of engaging seminars (starting with the Leadership webinars mentioned below). 

I wish you all a well-deserved, restful break over the festive season and look forward to working with you in what will hopefully be a brighter and exciting 2021!

Dr Liz Aston
SIPR Director

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Other Latest News

Seldom Heard Voices: Community Impact Event 


In 2021, SIPR, Police Scotland and Scottish Police Authority funded 5 grants to support research into ‘Seldom Heard’ communities. On Wednesday 26th April, we hosted a collaborative event to present the final research projects to an audience of academics, community members, NGO members, and Police Scotland staff and serving officers. First up, Kirsty Forrester from Dundee City Council and Dr Jonathan Mendel from the University of Dundee discussed their collaborative research with BAME communities and serving officers, highlighting the need for trust. Second, Dr Andrew Williams from St. Andrews and Inspector Jason Peter from the Scottish Violence Reduction Unit presented their ‘Photovoice’ Project which aimed to encourage young people in areas of inequality to engage with their community by taking pictures. Third, Dr Julie Berg and Emily Mann from University of Glasgow and University of Edinburgh respectively presented their project’ Accounting for Complexities: an Intersectional Approach to Enhancing Police Practitioner Accountability, Legitimacy & Sustainable Reform’. Fourth, Professor James Moir and Dr Corinne Jola from Abertay University focus on the topic of empathy with LGBT youth who are care experienced or are from other disadvantaged background. Finally, Bryony Nisbet from Queen Margaret University presented her and Dr Nicole Vidal’s research into refugee and asylum-seeker experiences, trust and confidence with Police Scotland. Following the presentations, representatives from Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority were invited to reflect on the findings and recommendations, and to provide assurances of the SPA and Police Scotland’s ongoing commitment to the communities and the issues raised. Assistant Chief Constable Emma Bond, said: “This important research underlines our commitment to listening to all our communities so we can continually improve how we represent, reflect and serve them. “Providing every citizen with a just and effective police service is fundamental to policing legitimacy and to our ability to keep people safe. “A great strength of Police Scotland is that our officers and staff are drawn from different backgrounds and experiences. What unites us is our shared and non-negotiable set of values – integrity, fairness, respect and a commitment to upholding human rights. “I am grateful to everyone who contributed to this work and we are already considering the recommendations made so that we can continue to design our services to best meet the needs of our communities.” Tom Halpin from the Scottish Police Authority said “The Authority is committed to policing in the public interest, to do that we must understand public views, opinions, and concerns. The research published today will allow us to gain more insight into where to target our activity and attention to ensure we build the strongest relationships we can with all communities in Scotland.” SIPR Director Liz Aston underlined SIPR’s commitment stating that “SIPR will continue to support the dissemination of these important research findings in order to ensure that they impact policing policy and practice”. SIPR hopes to continue to support research into Seldom Heard Communities.



After seven years as a SIPR Associate Director, Professor Denise Martin has made the difficult decision to step down.

SIPR Associate Director


Following Professor Denise Martin’s decision to step down from her role as SIPR Associate Director and lead of the Education and Leadership network, SIPR is now inviting applications from prospective candidates to take on this role.

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