I Springfield, Massachusetts använder sig polisen bland annat av studenter från Harvard för att samla in data om brott i staden, allt en del av en strategi – Counter Criminal Continuum, eller C3 – som militären lärt sig för att kartlägga rebellverksamhet i Irak och Afghanistan. Från Nature – “A data-driven war on crime“:
Among the elements that the Springfield C3 programme borrows from the military is a data-collection system called Lighthouse, which researchers at the US Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, developed to gather data on insurgents in countries such as Afghanistan. The Springfield police are using Lighthouse to collect information on gang members and criminals. Parker’s students are trying to use this and other crime-related data to help police to improve their methods. They have created a ‘war room’, where they are working on social-network analysis and computational social science in an effort to predict where crime may happen.
The students use a variety of methods, including organizing street-level data with Google Maps to plot and photo-document neighbourhoods block by block, and then combining the data with public statistics for crime, demographics and public health. They then use linear-regression techniques to analyse the statistics with the aim of developing computational tools to help police anticipate crime or identify key gang leaders.