The world’s first dedicated police and security research centre was launched at Griffith University today.

The Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security (CEPS) is headquartered at Griffith University, in partnership with the Australian National University, the University of Queensland and Charles Sturt University, bringing international focus to the study of policing and national security to Australia.

Vice Chancellor Professor Ian O’Connor said the centre’s world-class scholars would expand Australia’s understanding of trans-national threats and help build new responses to the security challenges of the 21st century.

“The $32 billion per year national cost of crime and the pervasive nature of terrorism in the post 9/11 environment creates a real and urgent need for high-quality research of scale, focus and depth not previously undertaken in Australia,” Professor

O’ Connor said.

“The centre’s research program will uncover the key vulnerabilities of Australian society and help design and implement fair, evidenced-based policing and security responses.”

CEPS Director Professor Lorraine Mazerolle said the centre would enhance Australia’s local policing capacity and security role in the Asia-Pacific region and globally.

“Our vision is to achieve excellence in policing and security research to drive local and global policy and practice reform strengthening the security and wellbeing of Australia,” Professor Mazerolle said.

CEPS has five broad goals:

  • Deliver an exceptional research program;
  • Educate the next generation of police and security scholars;
  • Grow research and policy interest in national and international police and security issues;
  • Engage with the public, research, policy and practitioner environments on police and security issues and;
  • Achieve national and international distinction.

Projects commencing in 2008 include:

  • Professors Peter Grabosky (CEPS Deputy Director), Lorraine Mazerolle (CEPS Director) and Gabriele Bammer (Chief Investigator) will work with Harvard University and police departments in Australia to reform police responses to serious crime problems;
  • Professors Lorraine Mazerolle and Tim Prenzler (Chief Investigator) will work with international scholar Professor Lawrence Sherman (Cambridge University) to test better and more effective ways for policing vulnerable and conflict ridden communities and;
  • Professor Michael Wesley (Chief Investigator) will explore networks of trans-national actors that threaten Australia’s security.

CEPS has start-up funding totalling $26 million. Ten million dollars has been contributed by the Australian Research Council, $1 million from the Queensland Government and $4.43 million from other industry partners including the Victoria Police and the Australian Federal Police.

WHAT: Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security launch

WHEN: Thursday, February 21, 11am-12.15pm

WHERE: Level 7, Webb Centre, Queensland College of Art, South Bank.