Academic team: Professor Jean Hartley, Jane Roberts
Policing partners: Dorset Police and North Yorkshire Police
Status: In progress
Senior and aspiring senior police officers and staff have to work with elected politicians, local and national but especially with Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs). However, little is known about how senior police officers approach working with elected politicians and yet the relationship between senior police officers and elected politicians is likely to be of critical importance in tackling crime, anti-social behaviour and vulnerability. Complex, so-called wicked societal issues may well require sustained collaboration between politicians and senior police officers (and indeed other agencies) at a strategic level.
The key aim of this project is to understand better the dynamics of police working with politicians: what is their understanding of the role of elected politicians (senior local councillors and/ or directly elected mayors, metro-mayors and MPs as well as Police and Crime Commissioners); how do senior police officers interact with elected politicians; and how important is political astuteness for effective working in senior policing?
The research is in progress and so far has undertaken a literature review (will be made availabe to partners in next draft). Interviews with PCCs, chief constables and other senior politicians and police are starting in early 2021 (all voluntary and anonymised). The researchers are also running two linked workshops with superintendents.
The research will be completed by October 2021, and will include a final report and executive summary. Other outputs such as evidence cafes are being considered.