Partnerships for Prevention?  Some Obstacles to Police-Community Cooperation. In
Trevor Bennett (ed.), Preventing Crime and Disorder. Cambridge University:
Cambridge Cropwood Series 1996, 253-276.
This paper examines one aspect of the crime prevention equation, the ability of the police and
c
ommunity members to develop cooperative relationships around problem solving. The data
are drawn from an on-going study of the adoption of a community policing model by the City
of Chicago. While the new model of policing that is being crafted by the Chicago Police
Department is multi-faceted, at its core lies the formation of police-community partnerships
focused on problem identification and problem solving at the neighborhood level. To further
this, the CPD has made important structural changes designed to encourage the formation of
those partnerships, and has launched a massive training effort to ensure that officers and
their immediate supervisors understand the new roles and responsibilities that they are being
called upon to adopt. However, in practice the kinds of cultural and behavioral changes that
the department's community policing model calls for have been slow to emerge. Officers still
often remain on the sidelines at public meetings, not certain of how to deal with citizens excep
t
as
victims or trouble-makers. Both police and citizens still tend to define both problems and
preferred responses in traditional enforcement terms. Beat meetings often break down into
horror-story-telling sessions. Officers still most relish dealing with "serious crimes," and the
old reward system that is still in place gives more automatic recognition to writing traffic
citations than to doing effective problem solving. Beat team members chafe at having been
sidelined from the action, and often intentionally leave their beat to be present at "in
progress" calls in nearby areas. This paper examines some of the obstacles that have
impeded organizational change in Chicago and stand in the way of the development of joint
problem-solving efforts.
"Representing the Community in Community Policing," in Wesley G. Skogan (ed),
2003.
This chapter examines the role that resident involvement plays in community policing. Forms
of involvement vary considerably. In some places police try to educate residents by involving
them in informational programs or enrolling them in citizen police academies that give them
in-depth knowledge of law enforcement. Residents are often asked to assist the police,
usually being their "eyes and ears" and reporting crimes promptly when they occur. Residents
sometimes get involved in the co-production of safety when they partner with the police in
crime prevention projects or walk in officially sanctioned neighborhood patrol groups. Finally
residents may be called on to represent the community by serving on advisory boards or
decision-making committees. Even where these are old ideas, pushing them to center stage
as part of a larger strategic plan showcases the apparent commitment of police departments
to resident involvement. The issue is whether these are real and effective venues for resident
involvement. Rather than taking claims about resident involvement in community policing at
face value, analysts need to ask hard questions about them: Who is the community? Who
gets involved? Does their involvement make a difference?  Whose interests are served by the
program?  The chapter examines one form of resident involvement in community policing:
representational. It examines the role citizens play in identifying and prioritizing neighborhood
problems and monitoring the activities of police in Chicago. The chapter first examines the
structure of the program and then the issues of who gets involved, what they represent, how
effectively they monitor police activity, and the impact of their involvement on neighborhood
conditions.
Chicago Community Policing (CAPS) Abstracts
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