Jens Ludwig is the Edwin A. and Betty L. Bergman Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, Pritzker Director of the University of Chicago’s Crime Lab, and co-director of the Education Lab. He helped found the Crime Lab and Education Lab to work closely with the public sector to solve pressing social problems. These partnerships have led to important policy changes in cities around the country, including Chicago and New York, and have been featured in national news outlets such as the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, PBS News Hour, and National Public Radio, and the scientific basis for these policies have been published in leading peer-reviewed journals like the American Economic Review, the Quarterly Journal of EconomicsScience, and Nature. In 2012 he was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science.

Jens’s Resources
Policy Brief: Understanding and Improving Early Intervention Systems
Research Brief

Policy Brief: Understanding and Improving Early Intervention Systems

May 2024

This policy brief is a summary of a research paper entitled “Predicting Police Misconduct” by Greg Stoddard, Dylan Fitzpatrick, and Jens Ludwig.

NBER Working Paper: Predicting Police Misconduct
Academic Paper

NBER Working Paper: Predicting Police Misconduct

May 2024

This paper outlines the results of research on over a decade of Chicago Police Department data that shows it is possible to predict risk of on-duty and off-duty misconduct, allowing police departments to prioritize training and supportive resources.

Empirical Analysis of Prediction Mistakes in New York City Pretrial Data
Academic Paper

Empirical Analysis of Prediction Mistakes in New York City Pretrial Data

Feb 2024
2024 Video: Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy (CVILA) Inaugural Cohort
Video

2024 Video: Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy (CVILA) Inaugural Cohort

Feb 2024

Watch our latest video about the inaugural cohort of the CVILA.

Jens’s Projects
Clearance Rates
CURRENT

Clearance Rates

The Crime Lab partnered with the Chicago Police Department to analyze historical trends in clearance rates for homicides and non-fatal shootings and evaluate the innovative Area Technology Center (ATC) model.

New York City Release Assessment
CURRENT

New York City Release Assessment

The Crime Lab partnered with New York City leaders to update its pretrial release assessment to be more accurate and equitable with the aim of helping judges reduce pretrial incarceration by identifying the vast majority of low-risk defendants who can be released without bail or other pretrial conditions.

Strategic Decision Support Centers (SDSCs)

Strategic Decision Support Centers (SDSCs)

The Crime Lab and the City of Chicago joined forces to implement data-driven management strategies that address gun violence in some of the city’s most heavily affected communities.

Officer Support System (OSS)
CURRENT

Officer Support System (OSS)

The Crime Lab partnered with the Chicago Police Department (CPD) to develop the Officer Support System (OSS), a next-generation, data-driven early intervention system to promote officers’ long-term mental health and wellness.

Latest Updates

The people’s plan for community safety – even more needed
Op-Ed
Chicago Tribune
May 2024

The people’s plan for community safety – even more needed

Read Crime Lab Faculty Director Jens Ludwig’s latest op-ed arguing that to reduce violence, we should leverage data science to figure out how to get more social good out of what the city is already spending on evidence-based strategies such as community violence intervention programs.

Incrementalism Beats YOLO
Op-Ed
Vital City
Mar 2024

Incrementalism Beats YOLO

For Vital City’s “Does Evidence Matter?” issue, Crime Lab affiliate Philip Cook and Pritzker director Jens Ludwig provide commentary highlighting evidence that incremental social policies have a positive impact on society.

Jens Ludwig and Jacob Miller: We are seeing a lethal shift in America’s gun violence crisis
Op-Ed
Chicago Tribune
Mar 2024

Jens Ludwig and Jacob Miller: We are seeing a lethal shift in America’s gun violence crisis

The Crime Lab’s Pritzker director Jens Ludwig and analyst Jacob Miller provide commentary on the increase in the lethality of shootings despite the decrease in overall gun violence last year.