We are currently at a point in time in Australia where questions concerning how to govern police have never been more pressing or more fluid. Systemic corruption has been identified in several states; a range of new accountability mechanisms have been established internal and external to police and in Victoria police corruption has been linked with a violent 'gangland war'. This thesis locates these contemporary developments within a broader analysis of the historical circumstances shaping the changing techniques for governing state police. More specifically, this thesis engages in a detailed comparative study of the changing techniques of governing police in Queensland and Victoria. The theoretical tools to conduct this analysis are drawn from 'governmentality studies'. This refers to a broad grouping of theoretical scholarship concerned with the changing ideas - or 'political rationalities' - on how to govern some thing or some activity, and the underlying
reasoning, justifications and ambitions contained within the practical tools or 'techniques' used to govern. Central to the thesis is an argument that a new politics of policing has emerged recently, one that extends the dyad of the old accountability - 'police powers' and 'external accountability' - to a pluralisation of accountability processes and structures. The thesis argues that governmentality studies offer new insights into ways of analysing the techniques for governing state police, increasingly shaped by the managerialisation of governing and embodying efforts to make police innovative, risk-taking problems-solvers. This is what I refer to as an open-ended normative project for re-making the entrepreneurial officer. However, a detailed examination of the development of governmental techniques for 'making up' the entrepreneurial officer indicates that such a governmental project is not implemented unproblematically. Nonetheless, the thesis concludes that the attempts to
remake the entrepreneurial officer through the managerialisation of governing presents distinct possibilities for a new 'politics of policing' that fosters deliberative, reflective police practice within a new framework of police accountabilities
Field of Research
160205 Police Administration, Procedures and Practice 220107 Professional Ethics (incl police and research ethics)
Socio Economic Objective
970118 Expanding Knowledge in Law and Legal Studies
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