Panel: Race and Policing in the Era of Big Data
(Crime and Drugs)

Thursday, November 2, 2017: 8:30 AM-10:00 AM
Stetson D (Hyatt Regency Chicago)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Panel Organizers:  Matthew B. Ross, The Ohio State University
Panel Chairs:  Shawn Bushway, State University of New York at Albany
Discussants:  Jeffrey Grogger, University of Chicago and Amanda Geller, New York University

Endogenous Driving Behavior in Veil of Darkness Tests for Racial Profiling
Matthew B. Ross, The Ohio State University, Stephen L. Ross, University of Connecticut and Jesse Kalinowski, Quinnipiac University

Testing for Racial Discrimination in Police Searches of Motor Vehicles
Camelia Simoiu, Sam Corbett-Davies and Sharad Goel, Stanford University

Mitigating Post-Terry Stop Racial Disparities: Evaluating Pedestrian Stop Patterns in Seattle, WA
Reynaldo Rojo-Mendoza and Joshua Chanin, San Diego State University

The possibility that police officers treat minority citizens differently than their white peers has been a major source of recent political protest and social unrest. Much of the national conversation has focused on racial profiling and adverse treatment related to the disposition of pedestrian and vehicular traffic stops. Ongoing concerns about fair and impartial policing have motivated an increasing number of state and local governments to start collecting and disseminating detailed administrative data on police motorist interactions. The canonical challenge for practitioners evaluating policing data for evidence of discrimination is that they are unable to observe the appropriate counterfactual. This proposed panel includes a multi-disciplinary group of young researchers from across the country who are working to develop novel approaches to evaluating policing data. Using cutting-edge techniques from applied microeconomics and machine learning, these papers make a significant contribution to the existing literature by applying new methodologies to data on police-motorist interaction and use of force. This panel will be of interest to both practitioners and scholars seeking to understand promising new analytical approaches to evaluating policing data for evidence of discrimination. More generally and related to the conference’s theme, this panel will illustrate how big data analytics is impacting the world of policing and helping to address an important societal issue related to equitable treatment.

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