Making Public Places Safer: Surveillance and Crime Prevention [NOOK Book]

Overview

The United Kingdom has more than 4.2 million public closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras-one for every fourteen citizens. Across the United States, hundreds of video surveillance systems are being installed in town centers, public transportation facilities, and schools at a cost exceeding $100 million annually. And now other Western countries have begun to experiment with CCTV to prevent crime in public places. In light of this expansion and the associated public expenditure, as well as pressing concerns ...
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Making Public Places Safer: Surveillance and Crime Prevention

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Overview

The United Kingdom has more than 4.2 million public closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras-one for every fourteen citizens. Across the United States, hundreds of video surveillance systems are being installed in town centers, public transportation facilities, and schools at a cost exceeding $100 million annually. And now other Western countries have begun to experiment with CCTV to prevent crime in public places. In light of this expansion and the associated public expenditure, as well as pressing concerns about privacy rights, there is an acute need for an evidence-based approach to inform policy and practice. Drawing on the highest-quality research, criminologists Brandon C. Welsh and David P. Farrington assess the effectiveness and social costs of not only CCTV, but also of other important surveillance methods to prevent crime in public space, such as improved street lighting, security guards, place managers, and defensible space. Importantly, the book goes beyond the question of "Does it work?" and examines the specific conditions and contexts under which these surveillance methods may have an effect on crime as well as the mechanisms that bring about a reduction in crime. At a time when cities need cost-effective methods to fight crime and the public gradually awakens to the burdens of sacrificing their privacy and civil rights for security, Welsh and Farrington provide this timely and reliable guide to the most effective and non-invasive uses of surveillance to make public places safer from crime.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A valuable contribution to the field of criminology...Welsh and Farrington take a much needed step in the right direction to bringing scientific evidence into the implementation decisions associated with crime prevention strategies. Ultimately, Making Public Places Safer a useful reference for a wide audience, and will hopefully lead to the situational-specific implementation of the most appropriate crime prevention strategies, balancing effectiveness, cost, and the preservation of individual liberties."—Crime, Law, and Social Change

"An important and timely work...[the book] presents an extremely accessible account of the current research on public area surveillance, with a view to answering the sorts of questions that local officials, police managers, and members of the public are most likely to ask...Although clearly written with the general reader in mind, Making Public Places Safer is both scholarly and well referenced, and seeks to make a substantial contribution to our understanding of how and why surveillance can lead to a reduction in crime."—British Journal of Sociology

"If we are going to make a lasting difference in reducing crime and violence in our cities, we need to use the highest quality scientific research on what works best. Anecdotes, program favorites of the month, and political ideology don't cut it-and they waste taxpayer dollars and may cause harm! In Making Public Places Safer, Welsh and Farrington carry out a rigorous evaluation of the scientific research on the full range of public area surveillance methods and set out clear-minded, evidence-based proposals. For all those cities, big and small, that are interested in or already use cameras, security guards, or other forms of surveillance to prevent crime, I say to my fellow police chiefs as well as city managers and other officials: Read this book. It's time to get smart on crime."—Edward F. Davis III, Police Commissioner, Boston Police Department

"Making Public Places Safer provides the best available assessment of techniques of public surveillance as a method of crime control. This is a first-rate book that bases its conclusions on scientific evidence and not on ideological debate. It is a must read for scholars, policy makers and practitioners who are interested in public policies of crime control."—David Weisburd, George Mason University and Hebrew University, Israel

"Criminologists, policy makers, and practitioners have now been alerted: it is possible to reduce crime by known means—lighting, CCTV, and focused use of security guards. While responsible agencies have done little to change their behavior, the scientific evidence, well-presented by Welsh and Farrington, suggests that crime can be cut by good practices and focused policies. Far more than an evaluation exercise, this is a balanced and thoughtful analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of modern modes of social control and surveillance. Anyone who needs cost-effective methods to reduce crime must read this book."—Peter K. Manning, Brooks Professor of Criminal Justice, Northeastern University

"If town planners, police commanders, and residents' associations had to choose one book to consult for guidance on how to reduce crime in public places, this should be their selection. Currently, these local authorities are ill-equipped to consider the crime implications of all their decisions. This book changes the picture—it is lucid, massively informative, and explicit about its policy implications."—Ken Pease, Professor of Criminology, Loughborough University, UK

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780190207663
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 10/7/2009
  • Series: Studies in Crime and Public Policy
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Brandon C. Welsh is an Associate Professor in the College of Criminal Justice at Northeastern University and Senior Research Fellow at the Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement. He is an author or editor of seven books, including Saving Children from a Life of Crime: Early Risk Factors and Effective Interventions (OUP, 2007), Preventing Crime: What Works for Children, Offenders, Victims, and Places, and Evidence-Based Crime Prevention.

David P. Farrington, Ph.D., is Professor of Psychological Criminology in the Institute of Criminology, Cambridge University. He is a former president of the American Society of Criminology, the British Society of Criminology, and the European Association of Psychology and Law.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction
Part I: Politics, Theory, and Method
2. The Politics of Surveillance for Crime Prevention
3. How Might Surveillance Measures Reduce Crime?
4. Evidence-Based Crime Prevention
Part II: Evidence of Effectiveness
5. Closed-Circuit Television
6. Improved Street Lighting
7. Security Guards, Place Managers, and Defensible Space
Part III: Policy Choices and Challenges
8. Safer Streets, Safer Cities: Policy Choices for America
9. Conclusions and Future Directions
Appendix: Methods of Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Notes
References
Index
1. Introduction
Part I: Politics, Theory, and Method
2. The Politics of Surveillance for Crime Prevention
3. How Might Surveillance Measures Reduce Crime?
4. Evidence-Based Crime Prevention
Part II: Evidence of Effectiveness
5. Closed-Circuit Television
6. Improved Street Lighting
7. Security Guards, Place Managers, and Defensible Space
Part III: Policy Choices and Challenges
8. Safer Streets, Safer Cities: Policy Choices for America
9. Conclusions and Future Directions
Appendix: Methods of Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Notes
References
Index

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