The problem-solving process, often referred to as the SARA (scanning, analysis, response, assessment) model, is a systematic policing approach used to reduce recurring problems that cause harm in neighborhoods and communities. Problem solving is the defining characteristic of any problem-oriented policing project. This entry describes the origins of the problem-solving process, the development of the SARA model, the types of activities associated with each of the four SARA model steps (scanning, analysis, response, assessment), and the benefits and challenges of adopting a problem-solving approach within a police organization.


The problem-solving process is a method of addressing problems commonly faced by police. The process allows police to reduce or eliminate conditions that facilitate crime. Opportunities for specific types of crime incidents are identified, examined, and blocked in ...

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