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date: 08 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The aim of this chapter is to provide an overview of expertise research in law enforcement and guidance for those planning on conducting research themselves. The chapter begins by describing conceptualizations of expertise in law enforcement, and offers a working definition. The chapter then identifies challenges facing researchers interested in conducting expertise research in law enforcement, and advises how to overcome those challenges. Next, concrete examples are provided of how research in this domain has been conducted. In doing so, the chapter covers a broad range of methods and highlights the subtleties that researchers new to the domain should consider when designing and conducting expertise research. Following that, key insights from the literature are described, covering the spectrum of expertise in law enforcement. Finally, directions for future research are suggested.

Keywords: police, law enforcement, craft, profession, expertise, decision making, tactical performance, perceptual skill, use of force, stress, shoot–don’t shoot

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