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Introduction

Better Policing Through Collaboration

Open Source Policing

Who, what, where, when, why, how?

I am a police lieutenant in a town in Massachusetts.  I am not a college professor or a philosopher and I have never published a book.  I have nothing to sell but I have an idea that I want to share.  The idea is called Open Source Policing.

Open Source Policing involves the gathering and distribution of free educational resources, training materials, software, intelligence resources and law enforcement information to local police agencies,police officers and the general public.

It seems that a lot of what drives modern policing in the United States is funding.  The best examples that we saw of this were during the hay days of the Community Policing Movement in the 90′s and then the Post 9/11 era focus on Homeland Security.  Due to the recent recession we are now entering an era of making due with less.  Our local government budgets are being slashed, our state governments are in a financial free fall and the federal funds aren’t exactly pouring in.

Quality policing costs a lot of money and cutting quality in law enforcement is just not a good idea.  Police need to keep up to date with the latest training, techniques and technology.  There is also a constant need to build inroads into communities and to improve communications and interoperability with other agencies.  If you want a proactive police department that does all of these things efficiently with the latest technology you will find a lot of high-priced vendors out there who are very happy to take lots of your money.  Open Source Policing can provide free solutions to address the needs of a modern police department that doesn’t have the resources to throw money at every problem.

Open Source Policing comes from the ideas behind the Open Source Software movement, the Open Content movement as well as the ideas behind Open Source Governance.  Open Source Policing is actually a pretty simple idea and many resources are already available to us.  I hope this site is used by many to spread and build upon this idea and make policing better for everyone.

I hope that you find this useful and please feel free to share your ideas and contribute your own resources to help.

Thank you,

-Glen Mills
Open Source Policing

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