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Refocusing Crime Prevention

Refocusing Crime Prevention: Collective Action and the Quest for Community

Copyright Date: 2007
Pages: 368
  • Book Info
    Refocusing Crime Prevention
    Book Description:

    Using thorough ethnographic research, Stephen Schneider identifies, comprehensively details, and critically examines the many factors that obstruct public participation in community crime prevention programs, while formulating strategies and theories that attempt to empower disadvantaged and marginalized communities.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-8476-8
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Preface
    (pp. ix-2)
  4. Introduction
    (pp. 3-16)

    This book explores the capacity of disadvantaged neighbourhoods to organize around significant local problems. In particular, through field research conducted in Vancouver, Canada, this study identifies and examines the factors that obstruct poor, high-crime neighbourhoods from effectively mobilizing around local crime and disorder problems. Based upon these findings, a subsequent objective is to develop crime prevention organizing theories and strategies that are commensurate with the unique environments of these neighbourhoods. While this study focuses on community crime prevention (CCP), it speaks to broader issues such as the impact of the political economy at the local level and the spatial concentration...

  5. Part One Theoretical and Empirical Background

    • 1 Community Crime Prevention: A Theoretical and Empirical Overview
      (pp. 19-46)

      The field of crime prevention is exceptionally broad, ranging from approaches that address the root causes of criminal behaviour to those that attempt to deter the opportunity for criminal acts to occur in a particular time and place. Crime prevention theory and practice also encompasses society’s most significant institutions, including the family, the school, the neighbourhood, the community, the labour market, the police, and other state agencies. This book concentrates on community crime prevention, and, more specifically, on the “community mobilization” model, which Lawrence Sherman (1997b: 65) contends is “the most visible community-based crime prevention strategy in the latter Twentieth...

    • 2 Mount Pleasant, Community Crime Prevention, and Participation in Local Collective Action
      (pp. 47-86)

      Located on the east side of Vancouver, Mount Pleasant is one of the city’s oldest settled parts. An inner-city neighbourhood that is adjacent to the downtown core, Mount Pleasant is one of twenty-two officially designated communities in the City of Vancouver (see fig. 2.1). The boundaries of Mount Pleasant are Cambie Street on the west, Sixteenth Avenue and Kingsway on the south, Knight Street and Clark Drive on the east, and Great Northern Way and First Avenue on the north. As indicated in figure 2.2, for planning purposes the community is officially made up of five parts: Mount Pleasant Industrial,...

  6. Part Two Obstacles to Participation in Community Crime Prevention Programs:: Research Findings, Discussion, and Analysis

    • 3 Obstacles to Participation and Collective Action at the Individual and Neighbourhood Level
      (pp. 89-121)

      Any attempt to identify the factors that impede participation in local collective action must begin by analysing the community and its residents. The objective of this chapter is to identify and explore the impediments to a broad-based mobilization of Mount Pleasant residents around crime, impediments that may stem from their characteristics, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviour at the individual and collective levels. Particular attention is paid to examining and comparing the demographic and socio-psychological characteristics of those who participate and those who do not participate in collective crime prevention groups and activities. These individual characteristics are then extrapolated to the local...

    • 4 Organizational Obstacles to Participation in Community Crime Prevention
      (pp. 122-152)

      In contemporary western societies, local collective action and social movements are less and less the result of a spontaneous galvanization of shared interests and more likely the product of arduous planning and coordination of existing or fledgling groups (Piven and Cloward, 1977; Rich, 1980; Checkoway and Zimmerman, 1992; Diani, 1992; Fisher, 1993; Tarrow, 1996; Della Porta and Diani, 1999; Clary and Snyder, 2002; Passy, 2003). This is no different when the issue of concern is crime; research shows that community organizations and their leadership are critical to the successful mobilization of neighbourhoods around crime and community safety (Skogan, 1990; Bennett,...

    • 5 Structural Obstacles to Collective Action Crime Prevention
      (pp. 153-202)

      Tim Hope advises that when considering the factors that contribute to the effectiveness of Community Crime Prevention (CCP) programs, one must make the distinction between two dimensions along which these programs operate. The first is the “‘horizontal’ dimension of social relations that exist among individuals and groups who share a common residential space.” The second is the “‘vertical’ dimension of social relations that connect local institutions to sources of power and resources in the wider civil society.” Hope (1995: 23–4) believes the two are equally important in combating crime at the local level. Yet, while “the principal mechanisms for...

  7. Part Three Reconceptualizing and Refocusing Community Crime Prevention

    • 6 Community Crime Prevention as Collective Action
      (pp. 205-243)

      Although firmly predicated upon collective action and citizen participation, community crime prevention (CCP) scholarship has generally failed to learn from and incorporate concepts, theories, and research concerned with collective behaviour, citizen participation, community organizing, and social movements. Because of this neglect, there have been no concerted attempts, theoretically or empirically, to examine CCP as a form of collective behaviour. This is unfortunate, for the juxtaposition of collective behaviour and social movement scholarship against CCP has the potential to help foster a better understanding of the latter, including those factors that promote and obstruct participation in collective crime prevention activities. This...

    • 7 Crime Prevention through Community Development: An Integrated, Critically Oriented Approach to Local Organizing
      (pp. 244-306)

      The consistent difficulties that collective crime prevention programs have encountered in summoning a broad-based mobilization of disadvantaged neighbourhoods calls into question the assumptions, tenets, and epistemologies of traditional community crime prevention (CCP) theory as they are applied to these neighbourhoods. The objective of this final chapter is to refocus and reconceptualize the normative aspects of community crime prevention for disadvantaged neighbourhoods, emphasizing prescriptions that may be able to provide a more efficacious basis upon which a widespread and inclusive mobilization of residents can be realized. The recommendations presented in this chapter directly address and attempt to overcome the obstacles to...

  8. Notes
    (pp. 307-312)
  9. References
    (pp. 313-350)
  10. Index
    (pp. 351-359)