In context of technological progress, ethical and didactic challenges as well as the added value of a partnership-based network of police organisations at a European level, the “VR & Police Network Meeting 2022” was successfully held from 14.3.2022 to 18.3.2022 in the idyllic Castle of Gimborn, near Cologne, Germany.
The challenges of introducing VR (technology provider selection, organisational obstacles, resources, etc.), the concrete benefits (business case calculations or potential savings in training etc.) but also topics like ethics (data protection, dealing with accidents at work etc.) or the adaptation of policies and internal processes were the main topics. Some of these questions were successfully answered or critically discussed throughout the seminar. “If we had considered these topics beforehand, we would have saved ourselves a lot,” said a participant from a police organisation that had already introduced VR training and only attended the seminar to “exchange experiences”. This shows the relevance of a living network on this still relatively new topic.
Ortwin Maetzing and Alexander Schäfer, from LAFP NRW (Landesamt für Ausbildung, Fortbildung und Personalangelegenheiten Nordrhein Westfalen, Germany – the state office for police training) and also project partner of www.shotpros.eu (No. 833672) hosted this 4 days network meeting with their knowledge of psychology and police operational training as well as a lot of commitment and humour. The days were filled with expert lectures from a wide range of disciplines and organisations, interactive workshops and try-out booths. Over 30 participants from over 7 German federal states and 5 European countries could experience VR themselves, discussed about the challenges of ethical guidelines or got impulse presentations by other organisations and their experience with VR. Colleges, universities, and applied research institutes talked about the future but also the present of VR and eXtended Reality (XR). The network event ended with the plan to host a similar event next year and keep in touch on the topic of VR and police in general.
If you also want to stay up to date, or attend an international event, please register at: https://www.vrandpolice.eu/join/#form