Situational Crime Prevention: Classifying Techniques Using “Good Enough” Theory

Martha J. Smith and Ronald V. Clarke

in The Oxford Handbook of Crime Prevention

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780195398823
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Situational Crime Prevention: Classifying Techniques Using “Good Enough” Theory

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This article discusses situational crime prevention (SCP), which tries to limit the harm that is caused by crime events. This is usually done by changing the more immediate causes of crimes and looking into the situational components of crime events. The discussion is more concerned with the more theoretical aspects of SCP, and does not present an overview of this area of crime-prevention practice. The first section takes a look at the general features of the rational choice perspective (RCP), the routine activity approach (RAA), and the crime pattern theory (CPT). It then introduces the classification systems of prevention measures that were developed by Richard Wortley and Ron Clarke and his colleagues. It also identifies some of the key theoretical concepts of the three major theories that have influenced SCP. This article ends with a section on whether the supporting theoretical aspects of SCP can be considered as “good enough” theory.

Keywords: situational crime prevention; causes of crimes; situational components; crime-prevention practice; rational choice perspective; routine activity approach; crime pattern theory; classification systems of prevention measures; good enough theory

Article.  10833 words. 

Subjects: Criminology and Criminal Justice ; Crime Prevention

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