DOJ Press Release letterhead

  • Monday, July 25, 2011
  • Office of Justice Programs (OJP)
  • Contact: Sheila Jerusalem
  • (202) 307-0703


WASHINGTON - The Department of Justice's National Institute of Justice (NIJ) today announced the release of "Strategic Cutback Management: Law Enforcement Leadership for Lean Times." This Research for Practice report presents lessons learned in law enforcement agencies from previous periods of economic decline and suggests approaches for addressing the current financial crisis.

As the United States grapples with the 10th economic decline since World War II, law enforcement agencies can learn from previous financial crises. This report identifies leadership as the most critical element for success in weathering tough economic times and highlights the importance of a leader's inspiration in motivating workers to support an agency's mission and priorities.

Additional lessons learned from the past include avoiding across-the-board budget cuts - they cause disproportionate harm; using the economic crisis to improve management and productivity; thinking long term, developing and sticking to a strategic plan with a multiyear time frame; looking for revenue opportunities in addition to cutting costs; inviting innovation and new approaches; looking outside the department for help, such as to other government agencies, academics, or other subject-matter experts; and using targeted layoffs, which are more effective than hiring freezes. The report warns that the financial constraints in law enforcement agencies are likely to get worse before they get better, and calls upon police executives to act boldly to avoid reducing core services.

TITLE: "Strategic Cutback Management: Law Enforcement Leadership for Lean Times," a Research for Practice report published by the National Institute of Justice
AUTHOR: Jane Wiseman
WHERE: National Criminal Justice Reference Service, NCJ 232077


The Office of Justice Programs (OJP), headed by Assistant Attorney General Laurie O. Robinson, provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has seven bureaus and offices: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; the Community Capacity Development Office, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART). More information about OJP and its components can be found at