Policing in the Aftermath of the 2020 Protests: Lessons Learned and Evolving Strategies for Reform

Call for papers for: Policing

Policing: An International Journal (PIJ) invites submissions for a special issue on Policing in the Aftermath of the 2020 Protests: Lessons Learned and Evolving Strategies for Reform, guest edited by Drs. Lorenzo M. Boyd, Delores Jones-Brown, and Richard C. Helfers.   


Criticisms of the police for disproportionate and excessive force against communities of color, especially Blacks, are longstanding, and many communities are frustrated by the repeated claims of reform that do not produce demonstrable change.   The recent video of the killing of George Floyd has raised the consciousness of many demographic groups and stakeholders including the police themselves, with calls for meaningful police reform to protect Black lives.


The guest editors of this special issue invite manuscripts describing studies related to the police, community, or governmental responses around the globe to the killing of George Floyd and/or to the civil unrest that followed.   The research does not have to be directly related to the George Floyd events, but instead could address any number of a variety of themes reflected in those events and the subsequent calls for meaningful and sustained police reform.  Manuscripts might describe, for instance, research that assesses whether hiring Black officers produces positive outcomes; whether more educated officers use less force; the impact of naming and decertifying problem officers; the impact of body-worn cameras and private videos on police accountablity; the effectiveness of implicit bias training; the prevalence or effectiveness of “duty to intervene” policies; the manifestions of the campaign to “defund the police”; the prevalence or impact of training protocols that ban life-threatening restraint techniques (e.g. chokeholds, carotid holds, head, back or chest compressions, rear handcuffing); and, the impact of qualified immunity on police accountability. Papers that address the dismantling and reformation of police agencies with demonstratively entrenched histories of systemic racism, excessive force and corruption are also welcome.


Prospective authors interested in submitting a manuscript should submit an abstract by January 1, 2021 to Drs. Delores Jones-Brown at [email protected] and Richard Helfers at [email protected] The abstract should describe the empirical study and the methods that were or will be used. The guest editors will review the abstracts and select relevant papers and inform the authors by February 15, 2021.  Manuscripts should be received no later than August 20, 2021.


This issue will include 12-14 articles. All manuscripts will undergo blind peer-review. The manuscripts must not exceed 7,500 words, including text, tables, figures, and references. Manuscripts must be submitted through the ScholarOne submission portal: http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/pijpsm The portal will open to begin accepting manuscripts for this special issue on April 30, 2021. When submitting your manuscript, please indicate your submission is intended for the Special Issue on “Policing in the Aftermath of the 2020 Protests: Lessons Learned and Evolving Strategies for Reform.”


The expected publication date for this special issue is Spring 2022.