A photo of a website. Photographer: Ola Kronkvist

Project: The institution of concern – a compulsory encounter between police and social services in times of change

The present project examines how the police assess and communicate concerns during some significant upcoming changes in routine and legislation, how social services interpret this, and what effects the interpretation has on the actions to be decided. In addition to this, questions about collaboration configurations between the police and social services are linked, as well as both general and specific occurrences of various types of concern reports.

Project information

Project manager
Peter Lindström
Other project members
Ola Kronkvist, Veronika Bucar Alm,Johan Rosquist, Jimmy Fungmark,Torbjörn Forkby
Participating organizations
Linnaeus University
Linnaeus University
1 January 2024 to 31 December 2027
Police work, social work, legal science (Department of Criminology and Police Work, Faculty of Social Sciences)

More about the project

Each year, approximately half a million concern reports are made to Social Services. One in ten children are affected, and the The Swedish Police Authority are likely responsible for nearly a quarter of these reports. In 2024, The Swedish Police Authority are introducing an updated assessment routine inspired by the so-called Scottish Model. At the same time, significant changes are being prepared for confidentiality between agencies, data management of concern reports within social services, and through the introduction of county-wide dialogues about similar approaches.

The quality and precision of the system are vital to ensure early coordinated interventions for children and young people at risk due to environment or personal behaviour. It is also crucial for maintaining the balance between privacy and efficiency, which in turn is necessary to create legitimacy and trust in the system among reporters and clients.

The present project will examine how the police assess and convey concerns during these changes, how social services interpret this, and the effects this interpretation has on the decisions regarding interventions. In addition, the study addresses issues of collaborative configurations between the The Swedish Police Authority and social services, as well as both general and specific prevalences.

The study is conducted through two series of interviews (semi-structured and focus groups), two series of surveys, and two series of registry studies of police concern reports, a selection of which is followed up in social services' case management. Key informants are used for validation of results and analysis.

The project is part of the research in the Centre for Police Research and Development research group.