Here at ELGL, we’re committed to transparency and sharing information with one another, whether that is across departments or across the country.
Transparency engenders trust in government (think: “trust, but verify”) and strengthens democracy by empowering the public with the information needed to make informed decisions. This is central to a democracy, a word that literally means empowering the public (demos “common people,” + kratos “strength or rule”). As the old adage asserts, knowledge is power.
While we strengthen our democracy with our transparency, we strengthen our ability to better serve the public as we share best practices and lessons learned with other public servants. Today, I’d like to highlight one example of information sharing that is a great resource for individuals and organizations that work in criminal justice in Oregon and potentially across the country.
In 2015, the Center for Policing Excellence and the state’s Criminal Justice Commission collaborated to design and develop the Oregon Knowledge Bank as a resource to foster interaction between law enforcement researchers and practitioners and share information and encourage the use of best practices by criminal justice entities across the state. The Oregon Knowledge Bank acts as the go-to resource on best and promising practices for criminal justice practitioners across the state. It also encourages public safety practitioners statewide to use evidence-based practices and problem-solving methods.
The entries in the Oregon Knowledge Bank are relatively short (i.e not a 15-page report) that break information down into easily digestible sections like, “Problem,” “Solution,” “Outcome,” and “Advice.” Relevant reports and research are included as attachments and contact information is included in each entry so you can learn even more about the program if you have the interest. To give you a flavor of what these reports look like, here are three examples:
- Bike Theft Reduction in Bend, OR
- Juvenile Crime Prevention in Multnomah County, OR
- Jail Reentry in Marion County, OR
As you can see, these posts are jammed packed with information, but very accessible.
How do you share information with colleagues and partners? What types of information do you want to see shared? Let us know in the comments or on social media.