Article

Policing

Michael Sierra-Arévalo

in Sociology

ISBN: 9780199756384
Published online October 2018 | | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199756384-0213
Policing

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Sociology
  • Comparative and Historical Sociology
  • Economic Sociology
  • Gender and Sexuality
  • Health, Illness, and Medicine
  • Population and Demography
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Social Movements and Social Change
  • Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility
  • Social Theory

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

Policing refers to the profession and practice of maintaining social order and enforcing the law through the street-level prevention, detection, and investigation of crime. As society’s most visible and contacted legal agents, police officers are empowered by a governmental body with authority to enforce laws and distribute coercive force to achieve their goals. Today, research on policing covers the practices and effects of police in countries across the globe, though academic research predominantly focuses on policing in the United States, the United Kingdom, and other Western nations. Though this entry focuses on policing research in the United States, insights from this literature can be and are frequently applied to the study of police in other contexts. Following an overview of resources that cover the historical development of modern policing, this entry moves to discuss foundational research that investigates the social function of the police (what role do police serve in society?) and is followed by a section on their occupational role (what do police do in the course of their work?). Closely linked to this research on the function and environment of the police, the next section covers research that describes the norms, values, and attitudes that make up police culture. The following section covers research on police decision-making in the context of stops, searches, and arrest, with special attention to the factors that influence those behaviors. Given the centrality of force to the police role, two sections attend to the highly consequential decision to use of force; the first of these looks at force writ large, while the second focuses specifically on the use of lethal force. Following these section on police force, the section on police misconduct and its control provides readings that describe various facets of police misconduct and strategies for reducing its prevalence. Turning from research that seeks to explain police behavior, the following section discusses research on the effectiveness of police activities in reducing crime, disorder, and the fear of crime, followed by a section dedicated to procedural justice and its effects on police legitimacy and legal cynicism. The final sections of this overview provides a primer for research on contemporary issues in policing, including police and immigration, police militarization, and Big Data technology in policing.

Article.  10825 words. 

Subjects: Sociology ; Comparative and Historical Sociology ; Economic Sociology ; Gender and Sexuality ; Health, Illness, and Medicine ; Population and Demography ; Race and Ethnicity ; Social Movements and Social Change ; Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility ; Social Theory

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

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