Edgeworth Analytics Publishes Report Finding Critical Flaws in MacArthur Justice Center Study on ShotSpotter

Edgeworth Also Releases Audit Confirming ShotSpotter’s 97% Gunshot Detection Accuracy Rate

WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Edgeworth Analytics, an economic and quantitative consulting firm based in Washington, D.C., released two reports about ShotSpotter, a provider of precision policing technology solutions that commissioned these independent reports.

The first report evaluates the analysis and methodology of a May 2021 MacArthur Justice Center (“MJC”) study and can be found here. The second report examines ShotSpotter’s claimed accuracy rate in gunshot reporting and can be found here.

In the first report, Edgeworth Analytics conducted an independent analysis and concluded that the MJC study’s conclusions were misleading because they flowed from a failure to provide a rigorous, balanced and thorough assessment of ShotSpotter’s use in Chicago. Specifically, Edgeworth Analytics found the MJC study drew conclusions based on data that are an incomplete information source that cannot, by themselves, be used to assess ShotSpotter’s efficacy. Further, in its assessment that ShotSpotter imposes a discriminatory burden on communities of color in Chicago, the MJC study omitted crucial context about how and where the Chicago Police Department deploys ShotSpotter sensors, ignoring historical data about homicide and gun crimes in the city.

The second report provides an independent review of ShotSpotter’s claims regarding its accuracy in gunshot reporting. Specifically, Edgeworth Analytics examined ShotSpotter’s representation that its system has an aggregate 97 percent accuracy rate that includes a 0.5 percent false positive rate—the rate at which gunfire is detected when none occurred—across all customers in 2019 and 2020. Edgeworth Analytics’s review confirmed that (1) these claims are consistent with data based on actual customer feedback from a broad range of ShotSpotter clients, and (2) despite variation in the intensity of reporting potential errors across clients, ShotSpotter’s accuracy rate does not appear to be sensitive to differences in clients’ propensity to report potential errors.

Edgeworth Analytics’s Dr. George Korenko, who earned his PhD in economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, is available for media interviews about the report.

About Edgeworth Analytics:

Through consulting and education, Edgeworth Analytics empowers professionals and organizations to unlock data’s potential. Edgeworth Analytics makes data analysis accessible and easy to understand for practitioners across a range of business services—including human resources, sales, operations, strategy, and finance—as well as for those looking to better understand the effects of a proposed or existing policy, investment, or regulation on industries, local markets, regional economies or the global economy. For more on Edgeworth Analytics, please click here.


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