Journal Article

Democratizing Strategic Intelligence?

Kira Vrist Rønn

in Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice

Volume 7, issue 1, pages 53-62
Published in print March 2013 | ISSN: 1752-4512
Published online November 2012 | e-ISSN: 1752-4520 | DOI:
Democratizing Strategic Intelligence?

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Existing policing strategies, e.g. intelligence-led policing (ILP), emphasize rationalization and the efficient management of crime. Hence, knowledge about the criminal environment in terms of an objective, decision-making framework ought to guide priority setting according to its proponents. Yet, in this article, I focus on methodologies used for threat and harm assessments of organized crime. I present three general and interrelated objections concerning this endeavour: (1) conceptual vagueness, (2) inherent subjectivity, and (3) incommensurability. Furthermore, I introduce two types of suggestions for how to overcome these objections: categorical and conditional suggestions. Finally, I attempt to qualify the suggestions by broadening the single perspective of police organizations and embracing the uncertainties and values notoriously connected with such assessments. I argue that a participatory approach to the methodology of threat and harm assessments, via inclusion of interests and values from an extended peer-community, e.g. when designing methodologies, may render strategic intelligence more reliable.

Journal Article.  5269 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Policing

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