UCL Events


Lunch Hour Lecture | Ethnic and racial disproportionality in police use of Taser

23 April 2024, 1:00 pm–2:00 pm

An image of a hand holding a taser

In this talk, Prof Bradford will address the significant ethnic and racial disparities in the use of the taser in the police.

This event is free.

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About the Lecture:

Police use of Taser, a ‘less lethal’ conducted energy device that delivers an electric shock intended to temporarily incapacitate targets, in England and Wales is marked by significant ethnic and racial disparities. In this lecture, Prof Bradford will present findings from TASERD (The Taser And Social, Ethnic and Racial Disparities research programme), a major research project that explored the potential causes of these disparities. Prof Bradford's research team analysed routine police data from fifteen forces from across England and Wales, and carried out more than 150 interviews with serving police officers, police scrutiny groups and members of the public. They also reviewed body worn camera footage and observed Taser training. Findings suggest that the drivers of ethnic disproportionality in police use of Taser are complex and nuanced. Disproportionality results not solely, or even primarily, from individual officer’s decisions, but stems also from institutional practices and priorities and, ultimately, the inequality and structural racism that marks British society.

About the Speaker

Ben Bradford

Professor of Global City Policing at UCL

Ben Bradford is Professor of Global City Policing at University College London and Director of the Centre for Global City Policing within the Department of Security and Crime Science. His research interests include public trust, police legitimacy, cooperation and compliance in justice settings, questions of social identity, and ethnic and other disparities in policing.