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1.04 Forensics markets

Academic team: Gary Bandy, Dr Loua Khalil, Prof Jean Hartley
Policing partners: Dorset Police
Status: Complete

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The challenge and re-prioritisation of police budgets has impacted on the amount the police spend on forensic examinations, which has an impact on the parallel development of a forensic services providers market with the closing of the Forensic Science Service (FSS).

The requirement for police forces to reduce their spending still further leads to a potential scenario where forces maintain the level of forensic testing for major crimes and seek to reduce their spending on forensic services in connection with volume crimes. This leads to the question of whether there is a critical minimum amount of forensic services that have to be commissioned to sustain the market.

To address this question, the research considered three related research questions:

  1. What is the current and predicted level of demand for forensic services in England and Wales across all crimes in the medium-term?
  2. What might that level of demand mean for police forces and forensic service providers?
  3. How effective are forensic services in terms of contributing to criminal justice outcomes?

The research also considered how the market might change as a result of reduced external expenditure.

Planned outputs

Title Outputs type Lead academic Year To note
Debate: when spending less causes a problem Journal item Bandy, G 2018  
Forensic markets  Abstract Bandy, G 2016 Available on request
Understanding effectiveness, efficiency and value in police forensic submissions within England and Wales Literature review Khalil, L 2016 Available on request
Understanding effectiveness, efficiency and value in police forensic submissions within England and Wales Final report Bandy, G 2016 Available on request

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