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New leader for University’s Police Studies beat

The University of Tasmania’s highly successful program of research and teaching in Policing and Emergency Management has a new leader.

Professor Nicole Asquith has joined the program and is also the new Director of the Tasmanian Institute of Law Enforcement Studies (TILES), coming from the Western Sydney University, where she was Associate Professor of Policing and Criminal Justice.

“One of the really exciting things for me in this new role is knowing that we enjoy a high level of trust with Tasmania Police and that we do this work respectfully and with applied knowledge of the working lives of police officers,” Professor Asquith said. “I have collaborated with about 10 different police services in my career and have found Tasmania Police to be particularly engaged in research-informed practice. They are so open to pursuing knowledge.

“In Tasmania, much of the innovation in the Police Service has involved collaborations with University of Tasmania researchers,” she said. “We are very keen to continue building on our work with Tasmania Police, and to collaborate with Emergency Services on research that we hope will inform their practice.”

An international review of police training in 2018-19 by US academic Professor Gary Cordner concluded that the ‘Tasmanian model’, in which university study is embedded into police training and professional development, is world’s best practice.

Professor Asquith has collaborated with TILES since 2008.  Her research interests include police protocols and policies when dealing with vulnerable people, community-police relationships in small towns and police relations with the LGBTIQ community.

She brings diverse life experience to the role, beginning her working life as an apprentice painter and then immersing herself in Labour Studies before becoming interested in policing through a project on the recruitment and retention of culturally and linguistically diverse police officers.

Linked to her academic research, Professor Asquith is the Secretary of the Australian Hate Crime Network, in which victimised communities are working towards a consolidated response to hate crime.

She is also actively involved in preventing and responding to LGBTIQ domestic and family violence and is the Co-Convenor of the LGBTIQ Domestic and Family Violence Interagency.

Professor Asquith will continue the very strong legacy created by TILES’ founding Director, Professor Roberta Julian, who retires in 2020.

Published on: 03 Sep 2020 10:18am