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New partnership awarded £50,000 police grant

A partnership led by the Centre for Health and Justice at the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) has been awarded £50,000 by the College of Policing to forge links between academics and the police.

The funding from the professional body for policing in England and Wales will create a regional network of police forces and academics to examine what works in tackling family violence, exploitation of vulnerable people and radicalisation.

The grant will match researchers from four universities and the national training body 'Skills for Justice' with personnel from five police forces to create local networks, run events and carry out research and training. The new partnerships will also enhance the skills of policing personnel so that they can take an increasingly active role in research on crime and public safety. Academics from the University of Birmingham, Nottingham, Liverpool and Aston will mentor personnel from Derbyshire, Merseyside, Nottinghamshire, South Yorkshire and the West Midlands police forces to test methods to ensure that resources are being used in the most efficient way.

It is hoped the Nottingham-based network will be a launch pad for future collaboration between police and academics and lead to a Centre for Better Policing based in the city.

A mixture of 75 academic institutions and police forces submitted bids to the College for sums of up to £50,000.

The partnership is one of seven universities, two police forces and a crime prevention charity which were all given grants totalling £496,000.

Professor Eddie Kane who led the bid from the IMH's Centre for Health and Justice, based at the University of Nottingham, said:

"This is a fantastic opportunity to match police and academic skills together to make a real difference to effectiveness of policing. Our group sees this funding as an important step in the growing collaboration between the police and academics and the launch platform for future initiatives and opportunities."

Head of research at the College of Policing, Rachel Tuffin, said:

"As the home of the What Works Centre for Crime Reduction, the College of Policing wants to build links between police and academia so the way we go about policing is as efficient and effective as possible. This funding will be a springboard for future research and learning so police officers and staff get the best evidence to help them cut crime and keep the public safe."

Professor Eddie Kane, who led the bid on behalf of the IMH, spoke to BBC Radio Nottingham's Alan Clifford about the project. Listen to Eddie's interview here (skip to 1:25:25).