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'I Order You to Adapt': Evaluating the Community Policing, French-Style

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image of European Journal of Crime, Criminal Law and Criminal Justice

This article presents a meta-evaluation of the evaluative researches on the 'police de proximité' led in France over the past twenty years. Five certainties have been highlighted concerning the evaluation of these ambiguous forms of police: the many meanings behind the concept of 'community policing', the danger of a management by the 'numbers' to evaluate a performance, the two meanings of the word 'impact', the problematic idea of 'good practices' in matters of community policing and the misleading idea of the 'resistance to change' in police organisations. Furthermore, the evaluative research on the performance of police organisation will always be dependant two major constitutive doubts: the 'black box' of complex police organisations and the role of politics in the policies of the police. To conclude, we can say that on the one hand a technical form of evaluation exists but, also a politic form of police evaluation is more important in the western states, taking into consideration the 'politisation' of matters of security.


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