January 26, 2022. News

VRU Evaluation Lead Dr Tim Lowe joins Ethox Fellowship – new VRU blog published

The VRU’s Evaluation Lead, Dr Tim Lowe, who joined in September 2021, has been offered a Visiting Fellowship with the University of Oxford’s Ethox Centre, a centre of research excellence which aims to improve ethical standards in healthcare practice and medical research.

Dr Tim Lowe

The Ethox Centre aims to improve ethical standards in healthcare practice and in medical research. It does this through education, research, and the provision of ethics support to health professionals and medical researchers.

Tim’s current research focuses on the ethics of public health approaches to policing as a means of reducing serious violence and its associated health impacts. He is particularly interested in data ethics and policing as a central component of a public health approach, and works on the data ethical side of an innovative data project within the VRU: Thames Valley Together.

As part of his role in the VRU Tim manages its Data Ethics Committee, of which there are very few in policing nationally. This has led to interests in the involvement of the public in public sector decision-making, the question of legitimacy in making such decisions, and associated questions of bias and fairness.

Tim said “I’m delighted to be able to work with Ethox to develop thinking around police data use and ethics. This is a developing area in policing and the opportunity to work with leading international scholars will ensure appropriate rigour is applied to these complicated ethical conversations at the cutting edge of the debate.”

DCI Lewis Prescott-Mayling, Workstream Lead for Data & Targeting Thames Valley VRU, added “Thames Valley Violence Reduction Unit are pleased with this growing partnership with Ethox, a world leading academic partner. We understand data ethics is going to be of critical importance to legitimacy in policing, and recognise the importance of being open with our communities. There are huge opportunities to use public data for public good, to improve services, reduce crime, prevent harm and improve community wellbeing. We are excited to be leading the way in developing good practice and our relationship with Ethox, embodied in this position, is a critical part of this.”

Read Tim’s latest blog, along with all our previous posts on our blog page.