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Public Lecture: 14th May 2015

Electocracy with Accountabilities? England and Wales’ novel public governance model of Police and Crime Commissioners

Professor John Raine

It is now some two years since the first police and crime commissioners were elected (with one of the smallest turnouts ever) and there are less than twenty months to go before the next set of elections are due, with a general election coming in between. So how has this new governance model been working – of directly elected commissioners overseeing and funding policing and community safety in each force area and holding the chief constable to account on behalf of the local public? Based on a research project involving interviews with a sample of police and crime commissioners, this seminar offers insights on what has been different so far about police governance and what the prospects might be for the future.

Watch the lecture here: YouTube
Download the PowerPoint presentation


John has been an academic member of staff at the Institute of Local Government Studies at the University of Birmingham since 1979, during which time he has served two terms as Director (from 1995-2001 and from 2009-2011) as well as Director of Postgraduate Research, and Director of Postgraduate Studies. He was founder director of the University’s brand-leading Public Service MBA programme and of the MSc in Public Management.

John’s principal academic interests are focused on public governance especially in relation to criminal justice. He has been a member of the Criminal Justice Council for England and Wales since its inception in 2002, and he has long track record of research for the Home Office, Lord Chancellor’s Department and Ministry of Justice, as well as for local criminal justice agencies, in relation to court systems and processes, police governance and accountability; and probation in particular. He is also a specialist in local government, and again has undertaken many research and consultancy projects for individual local authorities as well as for national government departments. His research leadership in the field of local authority parking enforcement resulted in him acting as specialist adviser to the House of Commons Transport Select Committee for an enquiry on the subject, and in recent years he has also undertaken considerable research on other local authority regulatory responsibilities, notably, trading standards, environmental health and licensing. He also has practical experience of local government, having served as a parish councillor (1995-2000); as a district councillor since 2000, and as a county councillor since 2013.

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