Reducing Racial Polarization in Reactions to Police Use of Force: Identifying Mechanisms and Testing Interventions

Awarded Scholars:
Joshua Pasek, University of Michigan
Hakeem Jefferson, Stanford University
Fabian Neuner, Arizona State University
Project Date:
Aug 2022
Award Amount:

Encounters between Black Americans and law enforcement highlight disparities in the nation’s criminal justice system. Racial differences in citizens’ interactions with the police fundamentally shape how Americans perceive high-profile instances of police use of force against Black Americans, including whether the officers’ actions were appropriate. Communications expert Joshua Pasek and political scientists Hakeem Jefferson and Fabian Neuner will examine the persisting racial divide in reactions to criminal justice encounters. Their study will interrogate why Black and White Americans come to differing conclusions about Black people’s encounters with the criminal justice system. They will also test three interventions for reducing these racial differences.


RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal of original empirical research articles by both established and emerging scholars.


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