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Journal ArticleDOI

Policing Public Disorder: Theory and Practice

20 Aug 2008-Policing-an International Journal of Police Strategies & Management (Emerald Group Publishing Limited)-Vol. 31, Iss: 3, pp 523-525
About: This article is published in Policing-an International Journal of Police Strategies & Management.The article was published on 2008-08-20. It has received 43 citations till now.
Citations
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors explore the rise of citizen journalism and consider its implications for the policing and news media reporting of public protests in the twenty-first century, focusing on the use and impact of multi-media technologies during the 2009 G20 Summit Protests in London and evaluates their role in shaping the subsequent representation of protest as news.
Abstract: This article explores the rise of ‘citizen journalism’ and considers its implications for the policing and news media reporting of public protests in the twenty-first century. Our research focuses on the use and impact of multi-media technologies during the 2009 G20 Summit Protests in London and evaluates their role in shaping the subsequent representation of ‘protest as news’. The classic concepts of ‘inferential structure’ (Lang and Lang 1955) and ‘hierarchy of credibility’ (Becker 1967) are re-situated within the context of the 24–7 news mediasphere to analyse the transition in news media focus at G20 from ‘protester violence’ to ‘police violence’. This transition is understood in terms of three key issues: the capacity of technologically empowered citizen journalists to produce information that challenges the ‘official’ version of events; the inclination of professional and citizen journalists to actively seek out and use that information; and the existence of an information-communications marketplace that sustains the commodification and mass consumption of adversarial, anti-establishment news.

154 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examines the shifts in United States policing strategies over the last 50 years and uses illustrative cases from national conventions, the global justice movement and the anti-war movement to show how strategic incapacitation has become a leading social control strategy used in the policing of protests since 9/11.
Abstract: During the 1970s, the predominant strategy of protest policing shifted from ‘escalated force’ and repression of protesters to one of ‘negotiated management’ and mutual cooperation with protesters. Following the failures of negotiated management at the 1999 World Trade Organization demonstrations in Seattle, law enforcement quickly developed a new social control strategy, referred to here as ‘strategic incapacitation’. The US police response to the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks quickened the pace of police adoption of this new strategy, which emphasizes the goals of ‘securitizing society’ and isolating or neutralizing the sources of potential disruption. These goals are accomplished through (1) the use of surveillance and information sharing as a way to assess and monitor risks, (2) the use of pre-emptive arrests and less-lethal weapons to selectively disrupt or incapacitate protesters that engage in disruptive protest tactics or might do so, and (3) the extensive control of space in order to isolate and contain disruptive protesters actual or potential. In a comparative fashion, this paper examines the shifts in United States policing strategies over the last 50 years and uses illustrative cases from national conventions, the global justice movement and the anti-war movement to show how strategic incapacitation has become a leading social control strategy used in the policing of protests since 9/11. It concludes by identifying promising questions for future research.

84 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors report upon a critical "test case" for this "new approach" by analysing the policing of a series of protests against Government policy across 3 days that surrounded a Government party conference in Sheffield, a large city in the north of England.
Abstract: Following the major riots within England in August 2011, the efficacy of public order police decision making was brought into a sharp focus. None the less, the reform of this mode of policing within the UK was already underway with a strong emphasis upon policing through consent and the need to facilitate peaceful protest through dialogue and communication. This paper reports upon a critical ‘test case’ for this ‘new approach’ by analysing the policing of a series of protests against Government policy across 3 days that surrounded a Government party conference in Sheffield, a large city in the north of England. This paper draws out lessons to be learned from what proved to be a highly successful dialogue-based approach to policing protests. We contend that dialogue and liaison were effective because they allowed for an ongoing dynamic risk assessment that improved command-level decision making and enhanced police proportionality. The subsequent impact upon crowd dynamics allowed for an improved capacity for proactive public order management, encouraged ‘self-regulation’ in the crowd, and avoided the unnecessary police use of force at moments of tension. The implications of the analysis for theory and practice are discussed. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

64 citations


Cites background from "Policing Public Disorder: Theory an..."

  • ...Over recent decades there has also been a shift away from police responses based on escalated force to an emphasis on negotiated management and dialogue (Waddington 2007)....

    [...]

  • ...5 and Waddington’s (2011) chapter on Operation Obelisk highlights the significance of South Yorkshire Police’s use of social media and deployment of liaison officers....

    [...]

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examined the role of police theoretical view of crowd psychology and their operational practice during a high risk football crowd event and supported the argument that when the police hold a view of the crowd as inherently irrational and dangerous they rely upon tactics of mass containment and dispersal.
Abstract: Social psychological research suggests that where police hold a theoretical view of the crowd in line with the ‘classic’ crowd psychology of Gustave Le Bon this can lead to police practices that inadvertently escalate public disorder. This research reflects debates within the criminology literature which suggests that a primary factor governing police tactics is police knowledge. However, the existing research on the specific relationships between police theoretical knowledge of crowds and their practice towards them is limited by its reliance on post hoc data. This paper addresses this limitation by examining the role of police theoretical view of crowd psychology and their operational practice during a high risk football crowd event. The analysis supports the argument that when the police hold a view of the crowd as inherently irrational and dangerous they rely upon tactics of mass containment and dispersal. This study advances the literature by suggesting that this ‘classic’ theoretical view of the cro...

47 citations


Cites background from "Policing Public Disorder: Theory an..."

  • ...…is a very intimate relationship between the dynamics of crowd violence and public order policing (e.g. Waddington 1987, 1991, 1993, 1994, Jefferson 1990, della Porta and Reiter 1998, Sheptycki 2002, Hall and de Lint 2003, King and Waddington 2004, 2005, Waddington and King 2005, Waddington 2007)....

    [...]

  • ...This distinction is often contrasted in terms of a strategic orientation to ‘escalated force’ versus ‘negotiated management’ (Waddington 2007, p. 10)....

    [...]

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Gillham et al. as mentioned in this paper provided further analysis of an emerging "liaison" based approach to the policing of public order in England and Wales, using direct observation of six protest events across two cities in England between May and November 2012.
Abstract: This article provides further analysis of an emerging ‘liaison’ based approach to the policing of public order in England and Wales (Gorringe, H., Stott, C. and Rosie, M. (2012). ‘Dialogue Police, Decision Making, and the Management of Public Order During Protest Crowd Events.’ Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling 9(2): 111–125.). Data is gathered from a range of sources including direct observation of a series of six protest events across two cities in England between May and November 2012. The research was conducted using principles of ‘participant observation’ within an ‘action research’ framework (Lewin, K. (1958). Group Decision and Social Change. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.). The qualitative analysis suggests that liaison based approaches are effective where they enhance police capacity for problem solving, conflict reduction, limit setting, and mediating during protest events. It is asserted that liaison based tactics can be undermined, however, through poor understanding of the approach among police commanders and inadequate sensitivity to interactions between police tactics, protest identities, ideology, and history. The implications of the data for understanding wider debates concerning iterative processes between ‘transgressive’ protest and shifts toward strategic incapacitation are discussed (Gillham, P. F. (2011). ‘Securitizing America: strategic incapacitation and the policing of protest since the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks.’ Sociology Compass 5(7): 636–652.).

42 citations

References
More filters
Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors explore the rise of citizen journalism and consider its implications for the policing and news media reporting of public protests in the twenty-first century, focusing on the use and impact of multi-media technologies during the 2009 G20 Summit Protests in London and evaluates their role in shaping the subsequent representation of protest as news.
Abstract: This article explores the rise of ‘citizen journalism’ and considers its implications for the policing and news media reporting of public protests in the twenty-first century. Our research focuses on the use and impact of multi-media technologies during the 2009 G20 Summit Protests in London and evaluates their role in shaping the subsequent representation of ‘protest as news’. The classic concepts of ‘inferential structure’ (Lang and Lang 1955) and ‘hierarchy of credibility’ (Becker 1967) are re-situated within the context of the 24–7 news mediasphere to analyse the transition in news media focus at G20 from ‘protester violence’ to ‘police violence’. This transition is understood in terms of three key issues: the capacity of technologically empowered citizen journalists to produce information that challenges the ‘official’ version of events; the inclination of professional and citizen journalists to actively seek out and use that information; and the existence of an information-communications marketplace that sustains the commodification and mass consumption of adversarial, anti-establishment news.

154 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examines the shifts in United States policing strategies over the last 50 years and uses illustrative cases from national conventions, the global justice movement and the anti-war movement to show how strategic incapacitation has become a leading social control strategy used in the policing of protests since 9/11.
Abstract: During the 1970s, the predominant strategy of protest policing shifted from ‘escalated force’ and repression of protesters to one of ‘negotiated management’ and mutual cooperation with protesters. Following the failures of negotiated management at the 1999 World Trade Organization demonstrations in Seattle, law enforcement quickly developed a new social control strategy, referred to here as ‘strategic incapacitation’. The US police response to the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks quickened the pace of police adoption of this new strategy, which emphasizes the goals of ‘securitizing society’ and isolating or neutralizing the sources of potential disruption. These goals are accomplished through (1) the use of surveillance and information sharing as a way to assess and monitor risks, (2) the use of pre-emptive arrests and less-lethal weapons to selectively disrupt or incapacitate protesters that engage in disruptive protest tactics or might do so, and (3) the extensive control of space in order to isolate and contain disruptive protesters actual or potential. In a comparative fashion, this paper examines the shifts in United States policing strategies over the last 50 years and uses illustrative cases from national conventions, the global justice movement and the anti-war movement to show how strategic incapacitation has become a leading social control strategy used in the policing of protests since 9/11. It concludes by identifying promising questions for future research.

84 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors report upon a critical "test case" for this "new approach" by analysing the policing of a series of protests against Government policy across 3 days that surrounded a Government party conference in Sheffield, a large city in the north of England.
Abstract: Following the major riots within England in August 2011, the efficacy of public order police decision making was brought into a sharp focus. None the less, the reform of this mode of policing within the UK was already underway with a strong emphasis upon policing through consent and the need to facilitate peaceful protest through dialogue and communication. This paper reports upon a critical ‘test case’ for this ‘new approach’ by analysing the policing of a series of protests against Government policy across 3 days that surrounded a Government party conference in Sheffield, a large city in the north of England. This paper draws out lessons to be learned from what proved to be a highly successful dialogue-based approach to policing protests. We contend that dialogue and liaison were effective because they allowed for an ongoing dynamic risk assessment that improved command-level decision making and enhanced police proportionality. The subsequent impact upon crowd dynamics allowed for an improved capacity for proactive public order management, encouraged ‘self-regulation’ in the crowd, and avoided the unnecessary police use of force at moments of tension. The implications of the analysis for theory and practice are discussed. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

64 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examined the role of police theoretical view of crowd psychology and their operational practice during a high risk football crowd event and supported the argument that when the police hold a view of the crowd as inherently irrational and dangerous they rely upon tactics of mass containment and dispersal.
Abstract: Social psychological research suggests that where police hold a theoretical view of the crowd in line with the ‘classic’ crowd psychology of Gustave Le Bon this can lead to police practices that inadvertently escalate public disorder. This research reflects debates within the criminology literature which suggests that a primary factor governing police tactics is police knowledge. However, the existing research on the specific relationships between police theoretical knowledge of crowds and their practice towards them is limited by its reliance on post hoc data. This paper addresses this limitation by examining the role of police theoretical view of crowd psychology and their operational practice during a high risk football crowd event. The analysis supports the argument that when the police hold a view of the crowd as inherently irrational and dangerous they rely upon tactics of mass containment and dispersal. This study advances the literature by suggesting that this ‘classic’ theoretical view of the cro...

47 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Gillham et al. as mentioned in this paper provided further analysis of an emerging "liaison" based approach to the policing of public order in England and Wales, using direct observation of six protest events across two cities in England between May and November 2012.
Abstract: This article provides further analysis of an emerging ‘liaison’ based approach to the policing of public order in England and Wales (Gorringe, H., Stott, C. and Rosie, M. (2012). ‘Dialogue Police, Decision Making, and the Management of Public Order During Protest Crowd Events.’ Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling 9(2): 111–125.). Data is gathered from a range of sources including direct observation of a series of six protest events across two cities in England between May and November 2012. The research was conducted using principles of ‘participant observation’ within an ‘action research’ framework (Lewin, K. (1958). Group Decision and Social Change. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.). The qualitative analysis suggests that liaison based approaches are effective where they enhance police capacity for problem solving, conflict reduction, limit setting, and mediating during protest events. It is asserted that liaison based tactics can be undermined, however, through poor understanding of the approach among police commanders and inadequate sensitivity to interactions between police tactics, protest identities, ideology, and history. The implications of the data for understanding wider debates concerning iterative processes between ‘transgressive’ protest and shifts toward strategic incapacitation are discussed (Gillham, P. F. (2011). ‘Securitizing America: strategic incapacitation and the policing of protest since the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks.’ Sociology Compass 5(7): 636–652.).

42 citations