Voices of Communications Officers: Factors Influencing Coding and Interpretation of Police Incident Logs

11 November 2020, 16:30 - 17:30

In this online lecture, Joanne Traynor from Essex Police will discuss her research into how communications officers interpret and code incident logs in different ways depending on inter-personal and situational influences.

Communications officers are members of police staff whose main responsibilities are separated by the role they perform. Call handlers answer emergency 999 and non-emergency 101 calls, draw salient information from callers and code the information obtained into an institutionalised frame, the police incident log. Dispatch operators interpret and mobilise a police response from the call handlers' coding.

Research in the field of police control room communication has emphasised the discourse of emergency call handling. However, the inter-personal and situational factors which may influence the coding and interpretation of police incident logs by communication officers have been inadequately explored. Consequently, the voices of communications officers have not been heard. Therefore, the overarching aim of this research was to bring the voices of communications officers to the literature and explore the factors they considered influenced them as they performed their role.

Joanne will present her findings from the descriptive analysis of a year’s incident log data and a thematic analysis of 48 hours of situated interviews conducted with communications officers as they coded and interpreted police incident logs.

Event Details

11 November 2020, 16:30 - 17:30

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