Joel Caplan helps cities and towns prevent crime and improve community policing. He helps them make data-informed decisions about policies and programs that enhance public safety. Dr. Caplan is a Professor at Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice (SCJ) and serves as Director of the SCJ Master’s Program and Director of the Rutgers Center on Public Security (RCPS). He specializes in GIS mapping and crime pattern analysis, and co-developed Risk Terrain Modeling (RTM), a spatial diagnostic technique that connects environmental features to crime locations. RTM helps people develop the best strategies for crime deterrence and prevention.
Dr. Caplan has professional experience as a police officer, 9-1-1 dispatcher and emergency medical technician. His research on communities, crime and policing empowers multiple stakeholders with evidence to maximize resources and create safer and more secure environments. Dr. Caplan has published over 40 peer-reviewed journal articles and two books, “Risk-Based Policing: Evidence-Based Crime Prevention with Big Data and Spatial Analytics” (2018) and “Risk Terrain Modeling: Crime Prevention and Risk Reduction” (2016). He earned his PhD from the University of Pennsylvania (2008) and is also a proud alumnus of Rutgers University (2004).