Institute of Education


Reducing police misconduct and use of force through procedural justice training

15 January 2020, 1:00 pm–2:00 pm

Police in USA

In this seminar, George Wood analyses to what degree the adoption of procedural justice training in the Chicago Police Department has helped to reduce police misconduct and the use of force against civilians.

Event Information

Open to





Dingeman Wiertz


Room G02
Gordon Square

Police misconduct and use of force have in recent years come under increasing scrutiny and public attention, certainly in the United States.

The procedural justice model of policing – which emphasises:

  • transparency
  • explaining policing actions and,
  • responding to community concerns.

This has been identified as a potential strategy for decreasing the number of interactions in which civilians experience disrespectful treatment or the unjustified use of force by police officers.

To examine the merits of this strategy, George Wood carries out an evaluation of the staggered adoption of procedural justice training in the Chicago Police Department. His primary finding is that training caused substantial reductions in complaints against the police and the use of force against civilians.

These reductions were maintained for at least one year. This evaluation indicates that officer retraining in procedural justice is a viable strategy for decreasing harmful policing practices and building popular legitimacy.

The research discussed in this seminar represents joint work with Tom Tyler (Yale University) and Andrew Papachristos (Northwestern University).


About the Speaker

George Wood

Postdoctoral Fellow in the Institute for Policy Research at Northwestern University

George's research examines social disparities in public health and criminal justice, combining field experiments and natural experiments with large-scale behavioural data.

More about George Wood