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    About the Lab

    The Policing Lab at Hamilton College’s Arthur Levitt Public Affairs Center conducts research on policing practices across the globe. Our current research focuses on documenting and explaining the spread of militarized policing--when police adopt the weaponry, organizational practices, and accountability typical of military forces. It is funded by an award from the National Science Foundation. Erica De Bruin, Associate Professor of Government at Hamilton, serves as Principal Investigator (PI) for the project and Lab Director.


    The Lab grew out of Summer and Winter Research Groups sponspored by the Levitt Center in 2020 and 2021. Publications that have come of these research groups and the Lab can be found here.

  • Job opportunities

    Research Assistant (Policing Lab)

    *We are now hiring for Spring 2024. Hamilton College students can apply via Handshake:



    Job requirements: The Policing Lab is hiring up to 6 research assistants for Spring 2024. Student researchers will have the opportunity to better understand the research process, develop data analysis and visualization skills, and potentially to serve as co-authors on research. During the academic year, research assistants will research the police forces of different countries, helping to compile a new, global dataset of police militarization, 1946-today. During the summer months, up to four research assistants will have the option to stay on to work collaboratively with Prof. De Bruin to analyze the data or pursue their own research projects with it. Substantive research questions the Lab will pursue include how militarized policing spread, why it spread in the way that it did, and what the political consequences have been.


    Candidates from underrepresented groups are particularly encouraged to apply. Historically, graduate programs in political science have struggled to recruit and retain women, scholars of color, and first-generation scholars. Research labs such as the Policing Lab at Hamilton aim to change this by providing a diverse group of undergraduate students with training in data collection, data analysis, and research design; providing a collaborative, team-based research experience; and ongoing mentoring.


    No prior experience conducting research is necessary to serve as a research assistant in the Lab. The strongest candidates will be interested in learning about policing around the globe; have a desire to develop research skills and work collaboratively with others; have strong attention to detail; and welcome constructive feedback.


    The positions are paid at $15.50 per hour. Positions in the Policing Lab require a commitment of 6-8 hours per week for the Spring Semester, starting January 19. Students must be available to work in person Friday mornings (9:00am-12:00pm), as well as attend one weekly team meeting on Mondays at a time TBD. The remaining weekly hours involve independent research.