Around the World

These articles feature a comparative look at policing across the globe. 

Around the World 16.1

Source: “‘Total policing’ requires doing less, not more,” by Martin Innes, 2012. The Guardian.

Metropolitan commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe believes “modern policing is multidimensional, encompassing a diversity of tasks beyond just preventing and detecting crime.” He proposes that police adopt a “more well-rounded depiction of the police function in society than those formulations that pivot around just one aspect (crime-fighting, zero-tolerance policing, intelligence-led policing, etc).”

In the past, metropolitan police in London were specialized. According to the commissioner, “Police focused on one task, dealing with only one section of the public, may view the whole world through that lens and struggled when called upon to police other situations.”

In the future, rather than doing “more with less,” metropolitan police officers may begin doing “less with more” and intervene less often, but with more impact. In other words, police officers with a broad range of skills will address more problems and not be required to refer problems to specialists.

  1. Do you believe the police should focus on preventing and detecting crime or adopt a more “well-rounded depiction”?
  2. How do you feel about law enforcement doing “less with more”? For example, the police will only respond when required, the police will be less visible in the lives of ordinary citizens. However, when the police are called out, they will have more resources to solve crimes and address problems. Explain your position.