School of Law

3 September 2015 | Sarah Redhead

Winners of the inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Impact Awards have now been announced, celebrating the tremendous contribution that the University makes to life outside the academic world.

Dr Philip Waywell of Research and Innovation Services says: “The inaugural Vice-Chancellor's Impact Awards were a great success, with submissions received from all nine faculties. Entrants were able to demonstrate a broad range of cultural, economic and societal impacts that had arisen from research undertaken here at the University of Leeds.  Beneficiaries of that research included members of the public, industrialists, cultural institutions and policy makers from across the world. The winning applicants were all commended for their sustained efforts in delivering high impact research over a number of years, often with multiple beneficiaries.”

Award winners will receive £2,500 each, to be used to help increase the impact of their research even further.

Social sciences category – Dr Clifford Stott – Promoting evidence-based public order and public safety policing

Dr Stott has studied how conflict develops in crowds and how some forms of policing can escalate the disorder that they are meant to curb.  His work has had a major influence on policing at public events and protests. 

Public protest policing in the UK was reviewed after the death of Ian Tomlinson during the G20 summit demonstrations in London in 2009.  Several recommendations made as a result of this review were based on Dr Stott’s research findings: dialogue and negotiation should now be the primary tools used by police at crowd events.  The research evidence which supports this new policy is covered as part of the National Public Order training given to all public order police commanders.

Police Liaison Teams (PLTs), which lead the way in putting the policy into practice, have now been established by two-thirds of UK police forces, and Dr Stott has played a key part in developing their expertise through workshops with senior officers, a national PLT conference, and further collaborative fieldwork.

These reforms in policy and practice have been successful in maximising public safety and reducing the likelihood of disorder at public events, safeguarding human rights, and making policing operations cheaper.

The Impact Award prize money will be used to expand the network of police forces involved in fieldwork research, agree with them a methodology for further research and provide research training to each force.

Find out more about Dr Stott's research.

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