About the Safety and Justice Program

The RAND Safety and Justice Program conducts research on topics related to public safety and the performance of the U.S. criminal justice system for federal law enforcement and other agencies, urban police departments, and other clients. Policy and research areas include policing, law enforcement, and corrections; crime, gangs, and violence prevention; drug abuse and drug policy; administration of justice, law, courts, and governance; and occupational and transportation safety.

  • Examining Police, Community Relations

    May 8, 2015

    The “Strengthening Police-Community Trust” panel held Wednesday at RAND's Pittsburgh offices felt ripped from the headlines, and from the outset the discussion was focused on what the moderator called “the intersection between the community and the police.”

  • Strengthening Police-Community Trust

    May 6, 2015

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, Pittsburgh Chief of Police Cameron McLay joins Councilman R. Daniel Lavelle and RAND's director of Safety and Justice, Brian Jackson, for a conversation about why building and maintaining trust between police and the public is critical for the health of American democracy.

  • Strengthening Trust Between Police and the Public

    May 1, 2015

    Amid recent tensions between law enforcement and the public, three key questions must be answered to build the foundation for long-lasting mutual trust, especially given technological changes that are increasing transparency.

Selected News and Publications

  • Internet Technology Could Aid Police, Courts, and Prisons

    Aug 17, 2015

    New Internet-based technology may aid criminal justice agencies through promising tools such as better criminal databases, remotely conducted trials, and electronic monitoring of parolees. But many of the developments raise issues related to civil rights, privacy, and cybersecurity that must be addressed.

  • Obama Commutes Sentences of 46 Drug Offenders. Now for the Hard Part

    Aug 10, 2015

    Last month, President Obama commuted more sentences in a single day than any president since Lyndon Johnson. But commutation doesn't erase a criminal conviction.

  • El Chapo's Prison Escape Should Come as No Surprise

    Jul 24, 2015

    Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzman's Sinaloa Cartel and similar criminal organizations have long used tunnels to literally undermine security along the U.S.-Mexico border.

  • In the Interest of Justice

    Jun 26, 2015

    As the line between criminal justice and national security continues to blur, K. Jack Riley offers three principles that can help young criminology practitioners and scholars.

  • Digital Evidence and the U.S. Criminal Justice System

    Apr 20, 2015

    There are significant challenges to successfully using digital evidence in criminal prosecutions. Through structured interaction with police digital forensic experts, prosecuting attorneys, a privacy advocate, and industry representatives, researchers identified and prioritized specific needs to improve utilization of digital evidence in criminal justice.

  • Interactive Tool for Ranking Digital Evidence Needs

    Apr 20, 2015

    Because digital evidence is increasingly important to the investigation and prosecution of many types of crimes, this tool presents a range of digital evidence needs and allows the user to see how a criminal justice agency's priorities would change when the importance of different digital evidence objectives is changed.