Special issue on POLICE ENCOUNTERS

Published on 22/06/2022

A Special Issue on POLICE ENCOUNTERS of the Journal of Organizational Ethnography guest edited by Megan O’Neill, Mike Rowe, Sofie De Kimpe and Zeljko Karas has been published online.

The editors’ aim has been to raise the use of powers to stop citizens, to check their identity and, in some circumstances, to conduct a search as an issue of academic and public concern. They have sought to understand, in countries beyond the USA and the UK, how these powers are experienced, how policing practitioners are held accountable and the politics surrounding the use of these powers. This Special Issue reflects the additional concern to understand how police officers themselves understand and use their power to stop citizens.

The papers included in this Special Issue are rich accounts of policing and police stops. They concern police encounters in Belgium, Germany, Italy, India, Australia and New Zealand, offering the potential for fresh ethnographic perspectives from beyond the UK and USA. They consider: processes by which “suspicion” is determined (which may be grounds for a stop); the role that stereotyping plays in these suspicions; the “norms” of police street encounters; considerations of context and space at both individual, institutional and national levels and how internal frameworks in policing can either enable problematic behaviour or actively discourage community-focussed methods.

The Special Issue includes:

  • Guest editorial: Police encounters by Megan O’Neill, Mike Rowe, Sofie De Kimpe, Zeljko Karas
  • Police stops, suspicion and the influence of police department cultures: a look into the Belgian context by Inès Saudelli, Sofie De Kimpe, Jenneke Christiaens
  • Police stops in Germany – between legal rules and informal practices by Hartmut Aden, Alexander Bosch, Jan Fährmann, Roman Thurn
  • Suspicious minds and suspicioning: constructing suspicion during policework by Ross Hendy
  • “Police spatial knowledge” – Aspects of spatial constitutions by the police by Eva Brauer, Tamara Dangelmaier, Daniela Hunold
  • Police interactions in post-colonial India: how particularistic accountability, legitimacy and tolerated illegality condition everyday policing in Delhi and Kerala by Ashwin Varghese
  • Deadly dialogues: The Magherini case and police brutalities in Italy by Vincenzo Scalia
  • Police selectivity “on demand”: the role of organisational justice in promoting procedural justice by Sarah Van Praet

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