Wednesday, July 7, 2010

DDACTS - It isn't just business that can use location-based information

With all of the hoopla about Foursquare et al, we sometimes forget that location-based information isn't only useful in driving traffic to your frozen yogurt shop.

In January 2010, the (U.S.) National Institute of Justice published Volume 2, Issue 3 of its Geography and Public Safety bulletin. The abstract, and a link to the bulletin itself, can be found here.

The key acronym in this issue is DDACTS, which stands for Data-Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety. Now my specific job doesn't get into this area, but our law enforcement customers are certainly interested in the topic. The abstract notes:

[T]he Data-Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS) helping law enforcement executives deploy resources more efficiently and effectively. This initiative was developed through a partnership between National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the National Institute of Justice. DDACTS emphasizes using geographic mapping to locate crime and traffic hot spots and target these areas with highly visible traffic enforcement.

Examples from Maryland, Louisiana, and Tennessee are detailed in the issue. This NIJ page notes that four other locations (in California, Nevada, New York, and Vermont) are trying the approach.
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