A framework for sharing information among criminal justice agencies: a case of Uganda Police and Judiciary
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The study aimed at designing a framework for sharing information among criminal justice system considering Uganda Police and Judiciary. The criminal justice system in Uganda is a complex national enterprise consisting of many independent units of government (jurisdictions and agencies) that must coordinate their activities to achieve a common goal: an efficient and effective justice system. To effectively coordinate these activities, stakeholders must effectively share information. However, due to its diversity and decentralization, the criminal justice system lacks a common framework for sharing information. The study was guided by three specific objectives which were; to investigate the challenges of criminal information sharing between the Uganda police and the judiciary in order to determine requirements for a framework for criminal information sharing; to design a framework for criminal information sharing between Uganda police and the Judiciary; and to evaluate a framework for criminal information sharing between the Uganda Police and Judiciary The study adopted a case study design which provided an exemplifying case and enabled an inquiry in information sharing practices and challenges between police and judiciary. The requirements from the results of the field study were used to extend the Portsmouth information sharing framework in order to derive a suitable one that explains the approach to criminal information sharing in the Ugandan context. Generally, the most significant discrete challenges to information sharing within the sampled criminal justice agencies were processes and technology, individual unwillingness, and organizational unwillingness. Although there is no prescriptive answer to solve all of the information/sharing dilemmas within organizations, a number of options are available to mitigate the impediments by improving coordination mechanisms and the context in which sharing occurs. This framework combines the tested strengths of information sharing and technology (information systems) for effective information sharing among criminal justice agencies. The framework is generic and can be adopted for use by other agencies in transitioning countries with similar contexts as Uganda in terms of information sharing environment.