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Interdisciplinary research from Loughborough features in national publication for police practitioners

A selection of pioneering research at Loughborough University has been featured in Police Professional, a monthly subscription journal for practitioners working in UK law enforcement.

The article – written by Professor John Coxhead of EMPAC (East Midlands Police and Academic Collaboration) – showcases work by academic staff, PhD and undergraduate students.

Researchers and their projects which have been included in the feature are as follows:

  • Professor Stephen Case and his work on the youth justice system in England and Wales
  • Dr Ashraf El-Hamalawi’s research into spotting concealed weapons as well as developing an app that can assess the safety and security of a property
  • Dr Paul Kelly and his team’s efforts to develop forensic investigations through the development of fingerprint retrievals on metal surfaces
  • PhD student Melanie-Jane Stoneman and her research on enhancing the risk assessment process for police custody by identifying key driving risk factors and understanding human decision-making through observation and interviews.

In addition, Automotive Engineering student Alex Sutton has designed a police car that is able to safely transport prisoners without the need for a caged van, with the potential to reduce costs, improve occupant safety and increase functionality when compared to current methods used.

Elliott McCallum – who also studies Automotive Engineering – has researched the ways to improve stolen vehicle recovery rates by assessing the viability of using passive ultra-high frequency RFID (radio frequency identification) as a tracking system.

The publication speaks to Professor Michael Henshaw who is the Academic Lead of the Secure and Resilient Societies Global Challenge.

Professor Henshaw commented: “We conduct a lot of applied research, and we have a huge amount that offers policing innovation opportunities.

“We have a quality and diverse research base already that offers much for policing, but there is more we can do in the future. We will continue to grow our collaborative working via the EMPAC and seek future opportunities to work with policing to help tackle slow and fast problems, i.e. strategic and tactical challenges.

“Loughborough is open for business for police research and I’d encourage anyone interested in innovating and improving policing to get in touch by emailing Research Development Managers, Grace Smalley and Katy Wing, at

“Our aspiration is to work ever more closely with policing and partners to accelerate our joint working to innovate and support secure and resilient communities.”