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Factors affecting police officers’ tendency to cooperate with private investigators

Chang-Hun Lee (Department of Police Administration, Hannam University, Daejeon City, Korea)
Ilhong Yun (Department of Police Administration, Chosun University, Gwanglu, Korea)

Policing: An International Journal

ISSN: 1363-951X

Article publication date: 11 November 2014




The purpose of this paper is to investigate the factors that influence police officers’ tendency to cooperate with private investigators.


A questionnaire survey method was used on a sample of 377 police officers in South Korea.


The findings suggested that, unlike previous literature, police officers’ rational choice (cost vs benefit calculation) was the most important factor, and characteristics of cases also significantly influenced police officers’ tendency to work with private investigators. Also, officers’ job assignment was relevant, unlike the organizational cultural context for cooperation.


Prior studies have continuously emphasized the importance of cooperation between public police and private police (particularly private investigators) in order to enhance effectiveness in crime fighting and the preventive functions of policing. However, the studies have not produced empirical evidence as to how cooperation between the two sectors could be enhanced. This study fills this void in the literature.



This study was supported by research fund from Chosun University, 2014.


Lee, C.-H. and Yun, I. (2014), "Factors affecting police officers’ tendency to cooperate with private investigators", Policing: An International Journal, Vol. 37 No. 4, pp. 712-727.



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Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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