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New paper published by Dr Tom Cockcroft

A new article on police education in policing and society has recently been published by Dr Tom Cockcroft, who is on secondment to the Centre.

Here Tom provides us with an introduction to the paper and the full article can be accessed below.

"This paper reports on a project that explores the experiences of serving police officers who chose to engage with programmes of study at Higher Education (HE) institutions. It contextualises the resulting data, using a theory knotting approach, against three sets of knowledge: that of public sector professionalisation, the relationship between the police institution and HE and, finally, that of employee-organisation relationships. Through a thematic analysis of the qualitative data we identify the concept of the ‘Blue Box’ conundrum which represents a critical perspective on the relationship between the structural architecture of policing (that is, procedural, policy and operational direction) and the opportunities provided by HE.

Here we show how control runs as a theme throughout policing, not just in respect of the police’s use of control over the public but also in respect of its internal dimensions manifested through often transactional relationships. As a result, we argue that whilst the professionalisation of all public sector occupations necessarily incorporate a degree of top down control, in the case of policing the scope for this is heightened as a result of the institution’s relationship to the state. The paper concludes by suggesting that whilst police engagement with HE is undoubtedly a positive development, that the symbolic and coercive power dynamics inherent to policing inevitably shape the process of professionalisation, the relationship between the police and HE, and officers’ ability to use knowledge and skills gained through HE engagement." Dr Tom Cockcroft

The full paper can be accessed here.

Dr Tom Cockcroft can be contacted here.

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