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The Role of Culture, Information, and Expectations in Police Self-Governance

Jennifer Dirmeyer and Alexander Cartwright

A chapter in Austrian Economics: The Next Generation, 2018, vol. 23, pp 113-129 from Emerald Publishing Ltd

Abstract: Abstract Several recent incidents of highly publicized police misconduct in the United States have intensified interest in controlling police behavior. Administrative control of police use of force is difficult because police officers are often the primary and most credible witnesses to police misconduct, effectively giving them enforcement power over rules they are subject to; police cooperation as both rule followers and rule enforcers is necessary for effectively constraining police misconduct. The authors develop a framework for examining how organizational and institutional variables can affect individual decision making. Using this framework, the authors identify three avenues for reducing police misconduct – increasing the information generated by non-police sources, increasing the incentive for officers to cooperate with external enforcement efforts, and changing the expectations of officers regarding the attitudes and behaviors of their peers – and present a case study of Oakland California Police Department to illustrate the implications.

Keywords: Police misconduct; internal inforcement; expectations; Blue Wall of Silence; culture; self-governance (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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