Monday, November 30, 2015

A victory for academic freedom

Last week we learned that the police had "blacklisted" a leading crime researcher from accessing police data under a "research contract" which lets them rewrite findings or veto publication at will. Today the police backed down and apologised to Dr Gilbert for blacklisting him. More importantly, they'll be revising that oodious (and quite possibly illegal) research contract;

As a result, Police is amending guidelines around vetting of researchers, including high-level oversight and more detailed case-by-case consideration on vetting checks on researchers which are negative.

Police will also be updating the research agreement, including removing any language that may be interpreted as restricting the independence of academic research.

Good. And now maybe they can focus on fighting criminals rather than massaging their public image.