Police and Crime Commissioners

The Transformation of Police Accountability

Bryn Caless and Jane Owens

Police and Crime Commissioners

Bryn Caless and Jane Owens

Distributed for Bristol University Press

256 pages | 6 x 9 | © 2016
Paper $42.95 ISBN: 9781447320708 Published May 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $99.00 ISBN: 9781447320692 Published May 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) are elected representatives whose role is to ensure that police forces in England and Wales are running effectively. Intended to bring a public voice to policing and hold the police to account, this controversial role also controls budgets and strategic planning.

Drawing on unprecedented access to PCCs and their chief officer teams, Bryn Caless and Jane Owens performed confidential interviews with both sides and reveal in this book the innermost workings of PCCs’ relationships with the police, media, partners, and the public. The authors also analyze the election process (in which some PCCs have been elected by the lowest voter turnout ever in the United Kingdom) and consider the future of this politically contested role. Amid ongoing international debates over police accountability, this fascinating look at the impact of PCCs on policing will be essential reading for PCCs themselves, chief officers, police officers, and police trainers, as well as academics, students, and researchers in criminology and policing.
List of tables and figures
Glossary of terms


1. Governance: the Police & Crime Commissioner and police accountability in context
2. The psephology of the November 2012 election: motive, means and opportunity
3. Is the law on my side?: relationships between the PCC and the chief police officer team
4. Partners, Colleagues, or rivals for oversight? The (PCC) art of making friends and influencing people
5. 'Putting yourself about': PCCs, the media and the public
6. The debate with no end: PCCs’ remit and the problems of policing
7. 'I wonder if the game is worth the candle': PCCs, their ‘work-life balance’ and their future

General summary
Appendix: Interview questionnaires
Review Quotes
Jonathon A. Cooper, Indiana University of Pennsylvania | Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Books
"Caless and Owens provide a depth of narrative that is rich and reminiscent."
Michael Rowe, Northumbria University
“Caless and Owens are to be congratulated on this rich and incisive analysis of Police and Crime Commissioners—a groundbreaking account of great value to scholars of policing and governance alike.”
Nick Alston, PCC for Essex and chair of the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners
“This fascinating account gives a unique insight into what Commissioners and their Chief Constables were thinking, and what went on behind closed doors, in those early months of  PCCs.”
Stuart Lister, University of Leeds
“This book is the most extensive and in-depth empirical study of Police and Crime Commissioners conducted to date. It provides fascinating insight into how these new constitutional actors are flexibly interpreting and discretely adapting to their responsibilities for governing the police.”
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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