Blog

The Uniqueness of Shooting Data

At the end of 2017, David Bernstein published an article in The Atlantic on shooting data, or rather the lack thereof. Non-fatal shooting data is often difficult to come by because it is generally lumped-in with other types of assault in national data collections. Bernstein notes:   “Fatal gun violence is often categorized in ways…

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Fighting Hate with Data: Releasing Open Hate and Bias Crime Data

As the movement for law enforcement agencies to release open data grows, one category is growing with it: open data on hate and bias crimes. Hate crimes are criminal offenses that are motivated to some extent by the offender’s bias. Unlike traditional criminal offenses that victimize individuals, hate crimes victimize entire groups and are highly…

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Extreme Times Call for Extreme Data

The recently concluded 2017 hurricane season was one of the most devastating seasons in US history. As such, in early November the Police Data Initiative hosted a webinar entitled “Open Data for Disaster Recovery: Extreme Times Call for Extreme Data.” Featuring PDI co-founder Denice Ross, currently a Public Interest Tech Fellow at the New America…

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Using Calls For Service Data To Reduce False Burglar Alarms (And More)

Open police data is often at its best when it is big, messy, and gives an unfiltered view into the complexities of policing, which is why Calls for Service data can be so wonderful.   Calls for Service data reflect incidents captured in an agency’s Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) system.  Each row represents one incident that…

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Embracing Pedestrian and Bicycle Crash Data

The number of Americans killed in traffic fatalities has fallen over the last decade, but the number of bicycle/pedestrian fatalities is up 12 percent over that time according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Meanwhile, the number of bicyclists commuting to work has risen by 64 percent since 2000.   As a result, cities…

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Not Just for Books: Public Libraries Partnering with Police to Engage Communities with Open Data

Available open datasets from law enforcement agencies in the Police Data Initiative (PDI) are becoming increasingly diverse and so too are the partners that help connect police data to communities. Two PDI agencies are leveraging unique partnerships with their local library systems to host police open data and encourage the public’s use of the data.…

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