The purpose of this paper is to test an aspect of the theory of police integrity by exploring the perceived disciplinary threat made by police agencies in Croatia, South Africa, South Korea, and the USA.
A police integrity survey was used to assess perceptions of the expected discipline meted out by police agencies in four countries. Samples of police officers from Croatia, South Africa, South Korea, and the USA evaluated 11 hypothetical scenarios describing various forms of police misconduct.
Bi-variate analyses reveal considerable divergence of perceptions of disciplinary consequences across the four countries. The majority of the respondents in each country expected some discipline for every scenario, but dismissal was expected for very few scenarios. Multivariate models of perceptions of expected discipline show that the country effect remains strong in the majority of the scenarios even in the presence of numerous controls.
To accommodate the diversity of legal rules, answers providing disciplinary options were not identical across countries. Some of the samples are representative, while others are convenience samples.
The results show that, controlling for societal integrity, organizational variables play a critical role in shaping the respondents’ perceptions of expected discipline. Teaching police officers official rules might be an effective tool toward attaining more accurate perceptions of expected discipline.
Police integrity research is dominated by single-country studies; this paper provides an in-depth exploration of perceptions of expected discipline across four countries.
Ivković, S., Haberfeld, M., Kang, W., Peacock, R. and Sauerman, A. (2016), "A multi-country comparative study of the perceived police disciplinary environments", Policing: An International Journal, Vol. 39 No. 2, pp. 338-353. https://doi.org/10.1108/PIJPSM-10-2015-0126Download as .RIS
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