Challenges of police-related research in Belgium

Research output: Unpublished contribution to conferenceUnpublished abstract


The rising number of protests relating to police violence and discriminatory policing across the world, highlight the current fragility of the relationship and the breach of trust between the police and parts of the (European) population. Combating racism became an important topic in 2020, with numerous (strategic) documents addressing this issue being adopted by the European Commission.

In response to this increase in awareness, FRANET has instructed all EU member states to write a report on the anti-racism policies that are currently in place within the police force of each respective country. As we conducted this research in Belgium, it quickly became clear that police research – especially regarding such sensitive topics as ethnicity and race – remains difficult, with the researchers facing several obstacles.

Our presentation will focus specifically on the experience of researchers in Belgium with conducting police-related research and gaining access to police data. We will discuss some of these difficulties – such as raising sensitive topics, accessibility and cooperativeness of relevant authorities, the unavailability of data, and the lack of centralized information – and how we approached them.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 23 Sep 2022
EventEuropean Society of Criminology - Malaga, Spain
Duration: 21 Sep 202224 Sep 2022


ConferenceEuropean Society of Criminology
Abbreviated titleEurocrim 2022
Internet address


  • police research
  • anti-racism
  • belgium


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