Body-Worn Cameras: what we know and where to go

Episode Summary

THIS EPISODE WAS FUNDED BY THE BRANT COMMUNITY FOUNDATION. In this podcast, researchers discuss the expectations and evidence-based conclusions about body-worn camera efficacy. The podcast speaks to important issues of transparency, the need for policies that demonstrate care for their communities, and the need for organizational reform alongside effective technological integration.

Episode Notes full transcript for this episode can be found HERE

About our guests in this episode: 

Dr. Alana Saulnier is an Assistant Professor at Lakehead University. She has studied the effects of body-worn cameras in pilot programs with the Chicago Police Department, Durham Regional Police Service, and the Guelph Police Service. 

Dr. Bryce Newell is an Assistant Professor of Media Law and Policy in the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon. his book, "Police Visibility: Privacy, Surveillance, and the False Promise of Body-Worn Cameras" is a socio-legal study of body-worn camera adoption by two police agencies in Washington State. it will be released by the University of California press in June 2021. the link to pre-order his book is included in the show notes. 

Dr. Cynthia Lum is the Director of the Centre for Evidence Based Crime Policy at George Mason University and also a professor in their Criminology, Law and Society Department. She is the first author of a Campbell Collaboration Systematic Review on body-worn cameras. we’ve included a link to that review in the show notes as well. 

Dr. Michael White is a Professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Arizona State University. He’s also the Co-Director of Training and Technical Assistance for the U.S. Department of Justice body-worn camera funding program.   

Contributors to this episode's production:

Avery Moore Kloss - Reporter, Host and Producer

Email her at

Carrie B. Sanders  - Executive Producer

Alana Saulnier - Executive Producer and Guest

Support and Funding:

Brant Community Foundation

Studies we mentioned in this episode:

Studies from Dr. Alana Saulnier:

Saulnier, A., Lahay, R., McCarty, W. P., & Sanders, C. (2020). The RIDE study: Effects of body‐worn cameras on public perceptions of police interactions. Criminology & Public Policy, 19(3), 833-854.

Saulnier, A., Sanders, C., Lahay, R., Krupp, D.B., Lindsay, S.M., Couture-Carron, A., Scholte, D., Dorion, C. & Burke, K. (2020). Evaluation of the DRPS BWC pilot project: A report prepared for the Durham Regional Police Service. Whitby, ON, Canada

St. Louis, E., Saulnier, A., & Walby, K. (2019). Police Use of Body-Worn Cameras: Challenges of Visibility, Procedural Justice, and Legitimacy. Surveillance & Society 17(3/4): 305-321.

Studies from Dr. Cynthia Lum:

Lum, C., Koper, C., Wilson, B., Stoltz, M., Goodier, M., Eggins, E., Higginson, A., & Mazerolle, L. (2020). The impacts of body-worn cameras in policing. Campbell Collaboration Systematic Review

Studies mentioned by Dr. Michael White:

Braga, A., Coldren Jr., J., Sousa, W., Rodriguez, D., & Alper, O. (2017) Benefits of Body-Worn Cameras: New Findings from a Randomized Controlled Trial at the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.

Zimroth, P. (2020) The Deployment of Body Worn Cameras on New York City Police Department (NYPD) Officers.

Studies from Dr. Bryce Newell:

Pre-orders for Dr. Bryce Newell's new book:
Newell, B. (2021). Police Visibility: Privacy, Surveillance, and the False Promise of Body-Worn Cameras .

Bryce Clayton Newell (editor) (2021), Police on Camera: Surveillance, Privacy, and Accountability. Routledge

Marthinus C. Koen, Bryce Clayton Newell, and Melinda R. Roberts, “Body-Worn Cameras: Technological Frames and Project Abandonment.” Journal of Criminal Justice 72 (1)

Bryce Clayton Newell and Ruben Greidanus, “Officer Discretion and the Choice to Record: Officer Attitudes Towards Body-Worn Camera Activation.” North Carolina Law Review 96 (5): 1525–1578 (2018)

Bryce Clayton Newell, “Collateral Visibility: A Socio-Legal Study of Police Body Camera Adoption, Privacy, and Public Disclosure in Washington State.” Indiana Law Journal 92 (4): 1329–1399 (2017)

Bryce Clayton Newell, “Context, Visibility, and Control: Police Work and the Contested Objectivity of Bystander Video.” New Media & Society 21 (1): 60–76 (2019)

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