Research / Themes / Trends in governance / Police partnerships

This research explores the ways in which police organizations conceptualize and implement ‘partnerships’ and ‘networks’ in various operational domains. It analyzes developments in public policing in relation to broader shifts in public sector governance. Through comparative research on policies and practices across country contexts including Australia, Canada and South Africa, and the United States we seek to explain how various police organizations see themselves, both symbolically and instrumentally, in relation to other government and non-government actors in the governance of security. We explore the question of ‘who should the police be’ in a world of networks. We work with police organizations to develop policies and practices that enlist the knowledge, capacities and resources of others.


Related faculty

Jennifer Wood
Jerry Ratcliffe


Selected publications

Marks, M., Shearing, C. & Wood, J. (in press) Who should the police be? Finding a new narrative for community policing in South Africa. Police Practice and Research: An International Journal.


Marks, M. & Wood, J. (2008) The South African policing 'nexus': Charting the policing landscape in Durban’, South African Review of Sociology, Volume 38, Issue 2: 134-160.


Wood, J. (2006) Dark networks, bright networks and the place of the police, pp. 246-269 in Fleming, J. & Wood, J. [eds.], Fighting Crime Together: The Challenges of Policing and Security Networks. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press.


Fleming, J. & Wood, J. [eds.] (2006) Fighting Crime Together: The Challenges of Policing and Security Networks. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press.