David Cowan has been a member of Victoria Police for 32 years and is Superintendent within the Southern Metropolitan Region of Melbourne. He has led a range of organisational reforms including the establishment of the first Family Violence Command in Australia as well as the formation Counter Terrorism Command. He led the organisational reviews of persons in custody and crime scene services.
He has experience as a police prosecutor and a detective and has led portfolios of drug and alcohol, victims, crime prevention and policing research. He is currently responsible for health, safety, wellbeing, and training for over 2,500 police in metro Melbourne.
He is the President of the Australia and New Zealand Society of Evidence Based Policing which has over 4000 members. He is advocate for bridging the gap between academia and policing and is currently running field trials relation to police legitimacy, serious public violence and place-based crime prevention.He has a master’s in criminology from the University of Cambridge and has undertaken the Senior Leaders in Government Program at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
His dissertation was on diversion’ Reducing Repeat Offending Through Less Prosecution in Victoria, Australia: Opportunities for Increased Diversion of Offenders. He has also led a focussed deterrence trial to reduce serious public violence.