The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is the research, development, and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice.

NIJ is dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of crime and justice issues through science. NIJ seeks to provide objective and independent knowledge and tools to inform the decision making of the criminal justice community to reduce crime and advance justice, particularly at the state and local levels.

NIJ is seeking applicants for the 2018 class of LEADS Scholars. Applicants should be mid-career, in-the-ranks leaders within their agencies and have a personal dedication to advancing the policing field through research. Applicants must be sworn officers and cannot be current NIJ grantees.

The LEADS Scholars program grew out of a desire to support and develop the next generation of law enforcement leadership in America. In 2014, the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) partnered with the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) to establish an annual award of ten, three-year scholarships for research-minded law enforcement officers. The program has since grown to 40 men and women officers across the country, who have formed a strong network of individuals committed to using evidence and data to inform law enforcement policy and practice.  NIJ LEADS Scholars are pioneers in the evidence-based policing movement who present and publish frequently about their research and findings.