Monica den Boer
Legal frameworks are indispensable cornerstones of modern policing. In this introductory chapter, it is argued that legislation is in constant evolution, for instance because international law has to be implemented at national level. Despite the fact that the law may be regarded as a codification of policing, a body of legal literature on police powers, distribution of authority and core principles tends to surprisingly scarce. Police legislation might be defined as a sediment of legislative history and development. Legislative frameworks that lay down normative principles for policing actors tend to be complex in nature. Laws and regulations apply to a wide range of public and even private actors, within national jurisdictions as well as across and beyond. The volume comprises contributions from a worldwide community of police scholars, who are dedicated to dive into their specialist domain of policing, whilst adopting a shared living law perspective of the law as an organic and interactive discourse, analysed against the backdrop of an international comparative perspective.
Monica den Boer
Police accountability implies that police activity is open to scrutiny by a variety of oversight institutions. The powers of democratically embedded police forces are checked and controlled by the public through designated processes. Procedural justice is regarded as one of the most important building blocks in guaranteeing police legitimacy. Police organizations tend to be overseen by a mixture of oversight mechanisms, which may include an independent police oversight authority with a formal mandate to investigate complaints against the police, making its findings public on a regular basis. This chapter adopts an internationally comparative perspective and observes that despite some levels of standardization and convergence between oversight models, sovereignty and tradition remain dominant factors in the architecture of police oversight mechanisms. Historical, cultural and national police structures demand a tailor-made approach when states are in transition. Oversight should apply to transnational policing agencies and structures, such as Interpol, Europol as well as international law enforcement databases.
Edited by Monica den Boer
Monica Den Boer
Transnational terrorism has become a pressing security topic on the international political agenda. In recent years, several strategies, policies and legal instruments have been developed at national and international level to deal with this issue more effectively. Within the European Union, common strategies and legal instruments were adopted in order to streamline the efforts of national agencies, such as the police and prosecution services. Building on formerly adopted international norms, the EU has developed a preventive approach against terrorism, as well as encouraged professional networking and training of police officers and prosecutors. The challenge remains that several Member States have not fundamentally adapted national counter-terrorism legislation, and that implementation of EU-legislation has been differentiated across the EU. Increasingly however, cross-border counter-terrorism investigations between trusted partners at bilateral and regional level has smoothened. Nevertheless, weaknesses in cross-border information exchange need to be overcome to improve policing and prosecution of terrorism.
Monica den Boer and Saskia Hufnagel
Women are gradually acquiring a more prominent position in the criminal justice chain, and females in senior police leadership positions may have a positive effect as role models. Currently however, the number of female officers in public police forces around the world is rather marginal, despite diversity management policies and legislation. Starting from the assumption that the growing complexity of societies amidst a process of globalization demands more diversity in police forces, several strategies and instruments have been developed to recruit, integrate and retain female police officers. Gender diversity is one of the main preconditions for achieving social legitimacy and public consent. This chapter addresses the global implementation and impact of legislative frameworks. After discussing a range of legislative instruments and regulatory activities by the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the European Union and other bodies, the authors conclude that the impact of the law tends to be limited: except non-discrimination legislation, binding international legislation for gender balance in public police organizations seems to be absent.
Monica den Boer, Tarja Mankkinen and Sirpa Virta
Within the field of policing studies, research on policing terrorism, extremism and radicalization from a legal-comparative perspective seems to be rare. Within legal discourse, terrorism has been positioned on the interstices between crime and war. In practice, the increased complexity and political nature of terrorism and radicalization pose significant challenges to legislators at all levels, as well as to the police and other law enforcement authorities. Departing from a limited supply of research on norms and legal instruments against terrorism, the authors observe a boost in national and international legal counter-terrorism instruments, which tend to trickle down in ordinary police working practices. As terrorism adopts a chameleon-like character, as a phenomenon that draws high political priority, it poses a significant challenge to domestic police organizations around the world to consolidate special professional expertise amidst the demand to ‘go glocal’ and to enter into multi-agency co-operation. Community policing is regarded as a pivotal tool in the prevention of radicalization and violent extremism.