The Boundaries of Public and Private Policing

Trevor Jones and Tim Newburn

in Private Security and Public Policing

Published in print July 1993 | ISBN: 9780198265696
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682933 | DOI:

Series: Private Security and Public Policing

The Boundaries of Public and Private Policing

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The growing focus upon fragmentation and diversity of ‘policing’ agencies has led to a number of important advances in our thinking about policing. First, it has broadened our focus beyond the activities of that body of state officials commonly known as ‘the police’. The work of a number of authors has highlighted a range of organisations and agencies outside the public police whose activities in some way can be described as ‘policing’. Thus, it is increasingly accepted that ‘policing’ should not be simply equated with what ‘the police’ do. Second, the existence of a range of agencies involved in policing has brought into question the utility of the public-private dichotomy in policing. In particular, there is a growing blurring between public policing and private policing. This is related partly to the existence of a range of so-called hybrid policing bodies whose sectoral status is ambiguous. This chapter proposes a conceptual framework that can be used to analyse the boundaries between the diverse range of bodies involved in policing.

Keywords: private policing; public policing; sectoral status; policing bodies; hybrid policing

Chapter.  18891 words. 

Subjects: Criminal Law

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