Alex Sutherland

Photo of Alex Sutherland
Senior Research Leader
Cambridge Office


D.Phil. in sociology, University of Oxford; M.Sc. (Econ.) in criminology & criminal justice, University of Cardiff; B.A. (Hons.) in sociology, University of Exeter

Media Resources

This researcher is available for interviews.

To arrange an interview, contact RAND Europe Media Relations at +44 (1223) 353 329, x2560, or email

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Alex Sutherland is a senior research leader at RAND Europe. His recent published work has been on police body-worn cameras and he is currently working on a number of randomised-controlled trials in education.

Prior to joining RAND, Sutherland spent three years coordinating and teaching quantitative methods on the training programme offered by the Social Sciences' Research Methods Centre at the University of Cambridge. He also worked for several years as a researcher at the Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford, before completing a Ph.D. in sociology, also at Oxford. Sutherland's research interests relate to violence, disorder and community cohesion; evaluation; and criminological theory.

Concurrent Non-RAND Positions

Research Associate, Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge

Selected Publications

Brunton-Smith, I., Sutherland, A. and Jackson, J. "The role of neighbourhoods in shaping crime and perceptions of crime," in van Ham, M., Neighbourhood effects or neighbourhood based problems? A policy context, Springer, 2012

Criminal Justice & Behavior, "'Contagious Accountability': A Global Multi-Site Randomized Controlled Trial on the Effect of Police Body-Worn Cameras on Citizens' Complaints against the Police," Ariel, B., Sutherland, A. et al., 2016

Obsuth, I., Cope, A., Sutherland, A., Nordby, L., Murray, A., Eisner, M., "London Education and Inclusion Project (LEIP): Exploring negative and null effects of a cluster-randomised school-intervention to reduce school exclusion – findings from protocol-based subgroup analyses," PLoS One (open access), 2016

Obsuth, I., Sutherland, A., Cope, A., Nordby, L., Murray, A. and Eisner, M., "London Education and Inclusion Project (LEIP): Results from a cluster-randomised controlled trial of an intervention to reduce school exclusion and antisocial behaviour," Journal of Youth and Adolescence (open access), 2016

Ariel, B., Farrar, W. and Sutherland, A., "The effect of police body-worn cameras on use-of-force and citizens’ complaints against the police: a randomized controlled trial," Journal of Quantitative Crimnology, 31(3), 2015

Boyle, A., Taylor, A., Giacomantonio, C. and Sutherland, A., "Using ambulance data to reduce community violence: critical literature review," European Journal of Emergency Medicine, 23(4), 2015

Brunton-Smith, I, Jackson, J. and Sutherland, A., "Bridging Structure and Perception: On the Social Ecology of Beliefs and Worries About Neighbourhood Violence in London," British Journal of Criminology, 54(4), 2014

Sutherland, A., Brunton-Smith, I and Jackson, J., "Collective efficacy, deprivation and violence in London," British Journal of Criminology, 53(6), 2013


  • Man loooking at chalked stars on a wall, photo by anyaberkut/Getty Images

    Assessing Confidence in “What Works” in Social Policy

    Policy decisions are increasingly informed (or expected to be informed) by research evidence. Making the process as systematic, transparent and explicit as possible provides users with ways to understand, question and contribute to the eventual policy recommendation, and gives policymakers and practitioners confidence in its credibility.

    Mar 21, 2019 The RAND Blog

  • A National Health Service London ambulance drives in London, Britain, January 24, 2017

    Siren Song: How Ambulance Data Could Help Police Forces in England and Wales

    Ambulance data is a new form of intelligence which may have value for violence prevention or reduction activities. Police forces can use this data to help identify violent crime that goes unreported to police, and aid problem-solving activities to reduce and prevent violence.

    Jan 29, 2018 Policing Insight

  • Child in denention center

    The Perils of Setting Police Targets: First Time Entrants to the Youth Justice System

    The police play a critical role in determining whether young people are either directed towards or diverted away from the justice system. Introducing policing targets can create perverse incentives and raises particular concerns because of the potential damaging effects that criminalization can have on young people.

    Jan 18, 2018 Policing Insight

  • An ambulance waits next to a police car outside the emergency department at St Thomas' Hospital in central London, Britain May 12, 2017

    Can Ambulance Data Help Police Forces Do More with Less?

    Police forces in England and Wales may not be aware of a large proportion of violent incidents taking place in their areas. Ambulance data could contribute to a more complete picture of violent crime and help police target resources more effectively.

    Oct 24, 2017 The Daily Telegraph

  • Financial data is displayed on a monitor

    How to Solve a Problem Like Missing Data

    Missing data is a challenge for statisticians, policymakers, and analysts, particularly when a robust evidence base is needed. How can this problem be addressed?

    Jun 16, 2017 Statistics Views

  • Police move a demonstrator as Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives to visit Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May at Downing Street in London, Britain, February 6, 2017

    Body Cameras: Can Police Have Too Much Discretion?

    Research on body cameras has shown mixed results. Complaints against police officers dropped when cameras were used, but rates of assault against them during arrests were higher. How much discretion the officers used in turning cameras on and off was also a factor.

    Mar 6, 2017 Policing Insight

  • A teacher pointing to a student for talking in class

    Body Cameras on Teachers Are Not the Answer to Classroom Management

    Teachers at two schools in England are wearing body cameras as part of a pilot program aimed at stopping classroom disruption. How they use the cameras could be counter-productive and may even escalate disruptive situations.

    Feb 13, 2017 Schools Week

  • A Los Angeles Police Department officer displays new body cameras in Los Angeles, California, August 31, 2015

    How Police Body Cameras Can Improve Behavior, Ease Tension

    Body cameras alone can't solve America's problems with policing. But used properly, they can help address mistrust between communities and police.

    Nov 2, 2016 San Diego Union-Tribune

  • Police Constable Yasa Amerat poses for a photograph with a body-worn video (BWV) camera, before a year-long trial by the Metropolitan police, at Kentish Town in London, May 6, 2014.

    Police Body-Worn Cameras: More to It Than What You See

    Billions of dollars are spent worldwide on the rollout of police body cameras. There is an urgent need to understand whether the cameras help police and the public, and under what conditions they work best.

    Oct 11, 2016 Policing Insight

  • Students receive their lunch at Salusbury Primary School in northwest London, June 11, 2014

    Free School Meals Are Still the Best Measure of Deprivation

    Free school meal eligibility is not a perfect measure of student disadvantage, but it's the best there is. Other measures, such as parental education or neighborhood deprivation have also been used, but they are not as good at determining which schools are most in need.

    Sep 26, 2016 Schools Week

  • Grandfather and grandson fishing

    Does Social Spending Hold the Key to Better Health?

    Many governments are cutting spending on social welfare programs, such as unemployment benefits, while protecting health care spending. This could actually be negatively affecting population health.

    May 24, 2016 Health Service Journal

  • Girl holding balloons

    Does Increased Social Spending Lead to Better Population Health?

    Higher levels of social spending are strongly associated with better health outcomes in many countries, with this link strengthening over time. The association also holds when looking at regional differences within the United States, where spending varies state-by-state.

    May 11, 2016 The RAND Blog