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Comparing the Democratic Governance of Police Intelligence

Comparing the Democratic Governance of Police Intelligence

New Models of Participation and Expertise in the United States and Europe

Edited by Thierry Delpeuch and Jacqueline E. Ross

"Intelligence-led policing" is an emerging movement of efforts to develop a more democratic approach to the governance of intelligence by expanding the types of expertise and the range of participants who collaborate in the networked governance of intelligence. This book examines how the partnership paradigm has transformed the ways in which participants gather, analyze, and use intelligence about security problems ranging from petty nuisances and violent crime to urban riots, organized crime, and terrorism. It explores changes in the way police and other security professionals define and prioritize these concerns and how the expanding range of stakeholders and the growing repertoire of solutions has transformed both the expertise and the deliberative processes involved.

Chapter 11: Governing the police by numbers: the French experience

Jacques de Maillard and Christian Mouhanna

Subjects: law - academic, comparative law, criminal law and justice, law and society, terrorism and security law, politics and public policy, terrorism and security


Like many other public administrations, police organizations have always used figures designed to show the efficiency and effectiveness of their services (Wilson, 1963; Lopez, 2007). At all levels of police administration, the use of performance indicators is common currency, both internally (for personnel management) and for communication with external partners. But it is undeniable that numerical data has assumed a wider scope due to the extension of new management techniques within these organizations, as well as due to the budgetary constraints affecting all European countries in recent years. This article aims to question the effects of using these indicators, both inside police organizations and in their relations with the outside world. Our example is the French National Police, focusing on the last fifteen years (2000–2014). Within the French police, the extensive use of indicators arises from three interlaced dynamics. First, there is a structural dimension to the transformation of public organizations, with the diffusion of techniques from the private sector that supposedly allow the performance of public institutions to be measured, so as to make them more effective. This use of quantitative indicators to measure and steer police activity is directly linked to the rise of a new kind of public management (NPM) which in France (as elsewhere) has penetrated the police world (Jones and Newburn, 2009; Maillard, 2009). As in other public organizations, there must be a standard of performance that can be measured and corrected. The rule relating to financial laws, adopted in 2001 and implemented after 2006, perfectly expresses this dynamic of administrative restructuring, with the introduction of new tools (an annual performance plan, an annual performance report, etc.), to which public administrations must conform (Bezes, 2008).

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