Recent SIPR Reports

A list of the recent SIPR publications from the last 12 months


SIPR Research Summary No 18

The Special Constable in Scotland: Understanding the motivations, expectations and the role of the Special Constabulary within Police Scotland

Dr. Andrew Wooff, Mr Graeme Dickson, and Dr Jamie Buchan - January 2020

This paper presents a summary of the full report 'Understanding special constables' which is provided below.

This project sought to examine the nature of the Special Constabulary as a volunteering resource in Scotland, considering the way(s) that the motivations, expectations and management of Special Constables could be understood and improved.

By using mixed methodology, this study provides robust evidence which supports a number of recommendations in order to:

  • Enhance the future experience of Special Constables;
  • Increase the recruitment and retention of Special Constables;
  • Allow Police Scotland to target and recruit particular types of Special Constable;
  • Improve the training and support of all Special Constables, and;
  • Support Divisional and National Coordinators within Police Scotland in managing Special Constables as a resource.



The Special Constable in Scotland: Understanding the motivations, expectations and the role of the Special Constabulary within Police Scotland

Dr. Andrew Wooff, Mr Graeme Dickson, and Dr Jamie Buchan - January 2020

Special Constables represent an important resource in contemporary policing, however their numbers have been in general decline. This report aims to examine the nature of the Special Constabulary as a volunteering resource in Scotland, and provide insight into the nature of police volunteerism, considering the motivations and expectations of Special Constables, their satisfaction and meaning within their policing role.

By using mixed methodology, this study provides robust evidence which supports a number of recommendations in order to:

  • Enhance the future experience of Special Constables;
  • Increase the recruitment and retention of Special Constables;
  • Allow Police Scotland to target and recruit particular types of Special Constable;
  • Improve the training and support of all Special Constables, and;
  • Support Divisional and National Coordinators within Police Scotland in managing Special Constables as a resource.



Evaluation of Extended Use and Deployment of Conductive Energy Devices (Tasers) to non-Firearms Officers within Police Scotland 

Professor Ross Deuchar Dr Liz Frondigoun Dr Catherine Davidones 

Researchers have revealed the findings of studies into the introduction of Police Scotland’s extended use of tasers and a new deployment model for Armed Response Vehicles (ARV), including fresh recommendations for the national force.

The taser research – commissioned by Police Scotland and undertaken by the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) – aimed to evaluate the first six months of deployment, including the perceived projected advantages and drawbacks of the rollout.

A particular focus was the extent to which perceived “resilience, confidence and personal safety” among Scotland’s Specially Trained Officers (STOs) was enhanced.

Another key objective of the study – which primarily sought the views of STOs both before and after their initial 16-20 week period of deployment with the device – was to identify any remaining challenges with the rollout and make recommendations for the future.