The Adoption of Robotics by Government Agencies: Evidence from Crime Labs

40 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2019

See all articles by Andrew B. Whitford

Andrew B. Whitford

University of Georgia - Department of Public Administration and Policy

Jeff Yates

Binghamton University - Department of Political Science

Adam Burchfield

University of Georgia

L. Jason Anastasopoulos

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); University of California, Berkeley - Center for the Study of Law and Society

Derrick Anderson

Arizona State University

Date Written: August 8, 2019

Abstract

The adoption and use of emerging and smart technologies like robotics is a key concern as the advanced economies undergo the latest technological revolution. While firms and factories often adopt technologies like robotics and advanced manufacturing techniques at a fast rate, government agencies are often seen as lagging in their adoption of such tools. We offer evidence about the adoption of robotics from the case of American crime laboratories. Using data from the census of crime labs, we show that the adoption of such technologies depends on traditional drivers of agency capacity and demand: budgets, the agency’s task environment, and its relative level of professionalism. Together these findings suggest that agencies can be early adopters of such technologies if they have the capacity (and need) to do so.

Keywords: robotics, public administration, government, DNA, adoption, technology, crime, laboratory

JEL Classification: A1, A2, K1, K2, L1, L2

Suggested Citation

Whitford, Andrew B. and Yates, Jeff L. and Burchfield, Adam and Anastasopoulos, L. Jason and Anderson, Derrick, The Adoption of Robotics by Government Agencies: Evidence from Crime Labs (August 8, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3434554

Andrew B. Whitford (Contact Author)

University of Georgia - Department of Public Administration and Policy ( email )

Athens, GA 30602
United States
706-542-2898 (Phone)
706-583-0610 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://andrewwhitford.com

Jeff L. Yates

Binghamton University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Binghamton, NY 13902
United States

Adam Burchfield

University of Georgia

Athens, GA 30602-6254
United States

L. Jason Anastasopoulos

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

University of California, Berkeley - Center for the Study of Law and Society ( email )

Berkeley, CA 94720-2150
United States

Derrick Anderson

Arizona State University ( email )

Farmer Building 440G PO Box 872011
Tempe, AZ 85287
United States

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