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Superintendents Event: Understanding and decision making – The use of conceptual frameworks to make effective decisions in a complex world

February 25 @ 10:00 am - 11:30 am


This event is solely for police of Superintendent rank


This session discusses how and why developing and maintaining understanding contributes to success and its contribution to effective decision-making.

Criticism has been repeatedly levelled at policing by academia, government and the media that policing is information-rich and knowledge-poor.

Policing does not work in isolation from the rest of the world; it is a part of a bigger system that keeps the community safe and secure.  This system in turn is part of a larger system in which various internal and external forces act.  Understanding the system in which policing sits and the system within policing itself is critical for effective decision making.

Policing operates in an environment which can best be described as Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous (VUCA) and while the National Decision-making Model (NDM) is helpful in dynamic circumstances where a decision is required other models or frameworks also exist where the starting and ending points for the decision may be more ambiguous than a straightforward operational decision.

This session will place into context the importance of understanding and decision-making in leading policing organisations and highlights the challenges that policing leaders, be they police staff or police officers, will encounter.

It will outline understanding generally and understanding the community more specifically. It also outlines the conceptual frameworks for thinking and general problem-solving.  While the session is for the most part theoretical it introduces several tools and frameworks which can be applied in practice.



  • Part 1 – Understanding introduces the basics of understanding, how to approach understanding in the modern policing environment, factors bearing on developing understanding and what enables understanding.
  • Part 2 – Decision Making begins by introducing a theoretical concept for thinking. It then develops ideas about the factors relating to problem-solving and how and why we think the way we do. it then concludes with advice for leaders and some sample decision making frameworks which can be explored further.



This free-of-charge, 1-1.5 hour webinar is scheduled to run from 10.00am until 11.30am on Thursday 25th February, and will be hosted on Microsoft Teams. The speaker will be Marc Attwell, a superintendent and Head of Performance and Assurance within South Wales Police, who has studied intensely the mechanisms which underlie crucial understanding and decision-making processes in the incredibly complex world of operational policing



PSA webinars are aimed at Superintendents who are keen to grow and develop their strategies for leadership and communication, whilst covering a wide variety of related themes.



You must be of Superintendent rank to attend this workshop.

To join this webinar, add a ticket to your cart at the bottom of the page (please ensure you have permission from your organisation/force prior to reserving a spot).

Joining instructions, including recommended pre-webinar preparation and detailed agenda, will be shared approximately two weeks prior to the webinar. For any further questions regarding this session, email leadershiplearning@college.pnn.police.uk



February 25
10:00 am - 11:30 am
Event Category:


College of Policing


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Understanding and decision making - The use of conceptual frameworks to make effective decisions in a complex world
This ticket represents only the confirmation of your booking. Joining instructions will be communicated separately 1-2 weeks prior to the webinar.
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