Penn State University will host an international conference to help law enforcement agencies implement strategies to maximize their resources during the current economic crisis, the university announced.

The 2010 International Conference on Results-Driven Policing is scheduled for May 6-7 in Baltimore.

"The most important element for fighting crime today is information and how you use it," said Joe DeStefano, Penn State Justice and Safety Institute client and business development manager and conference organizer. "Police departments need the best possible technology and information to develop and implement effective strategies and tactics to reduce crime and improve the quality of life in their communities."

Budget cuts are plaguing police departments worldwide, because of the global economic climate. The Los Angeles Police Department eliminated a new recruit class. Atlanta officials have hiked property taxes to end furloughs for police and firefighters. In East St. Louis, Ill., a police officer commended at a City Council meeting for capturing a murder suspect was laid off the same day.

Penn State, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police and the Atlantic Police Academy, Prince Edward Island, have created a partnership to educate and train law enforcement executive and command staff, government managers, research professionals, criminal justice professors and community leaders.

"The most pressing police challenge today is the increased accountability placed on police leaders and the increased pressure to provide effective and efficient public safety in our communities," said Edgar MacLeod, executive director of the Atlantic Police Academy. "Never before has the challenge been so great to deliver higher-level service without the corresponding resources."

This is the first in a series of international policing conferences that will be held in alternate years in the U.S. and Canada, according to the university.

Conference participants will have opportunities to learn how to do more with less, as well as about the latest knowledge and best practices for effective results-driven policing from police departments successfully using these methods to fight crime, Penn State announced.

The format for sessions will be similar to town hall meetings, where participants can ask questions of speakers. Topics will include, but are not limited to, the importance of obtaining and sharing information in policing, how to increase accountability and effectiveness, develop force multipliers, link strategies and tactics, and predict and plan for the future.