Journal Article

The Past, Present and Future of POP

Nick Tilley and Michael S. Scott

in Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice

Volume 6, issue 2, pages 122-132
Published in print June 2012 | ISSN: 1752-4512
Published online May 2012 | e-ISSN: 1752-4520 | DOI:
The Past, Present and Future of POP

Show Summary Details


Problem-oriented policing (POP) was the brainchild of Herman Goldstein. The core principles were first formulated in the late 1970s. They continue to exert a major influence on both police and partnership work, especially in the UK and US. POP has profoundly affected the work of the Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science at UCL. It involves a scientific approach—using systematically assembled evidence on the nature and extent of relevant recurrent problems to develop evidence based and ethical responses, which are systematically assessed for lessons learned. The concept has even broader implications for improving policing insofar as it responds to concerns about how police exercise discretion, how they are held accountable to the citizenry, their legal authority, and how their many functions are prioritized. Many later ideas in policing may usefully complement POP, but none challenges its basic approach. Situational crime prevention, which was originally developed at much the same time as POP, has many affinities with it and in practice the ideas complement one another well. The assessments of POP projects have often been weak. The implementation of POP also poses major challenges for policing and has in practice often been halting and weak. Robust assessments both of projects and of the approach as a whole, however, show it to be highly outcome effective. POP continues to offer a broad approach to developing and delivering effective and ethical policing. A series of suggestions for its future development are made.

Journal Article.  5877 words. 

Subjects: Policing

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.