Digitizing crime: How the use of predictive policing influences police work practices

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This paper reports on an ongoing ethnographic study on knowledge production through the use of analytics in police work. Based on an analysis of work practices of so-called “intelligence officers” and police action, we show that there is an important role for intermediaries – those who are in-between designers and users – who make analytics actionable. We find that the work of intermediaries includes three contextualizing practices: (1) validating, (2) filtering, and (3) supplementing. These practices are deemed necessary by both intelligence and police officers, as they give a richer and more concrete explanation to algorithmic outputs and create actionable knowledge. At the same time, these practices shape what knowledge is considered useful and which contextual factors will be taken into account.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Event34th European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) Colloquium: Surprise in and around Organizations: Journeys to the Unexpected - Tallinn, Estonia
Duration: 5 Jul 20187 Jul 2018
Conference number: 34


Conference34th European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS) Colloquium
Abbreviated titleEGOS


  • analytics
  • predictive policing
  • knowledge
  • sociomateriality


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