Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Enabling and constraining police power: on the moral regulation of policing

Bradford, Ben and Jackson, Jonathan (2015) Enabling and constraining police power: on the moral regulation of policing. LSE Law, Society and Economy Working Papers. The London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

PDF - Published Version
Download (324kB) | Preview

Identification Number: 10.2139/ssrn.2699652


In this paper we consider some of the ethical challenges inherent in the regulation of discretionary police power. Discretion is central to police policy and practice, but it also provides a level of freedom that opens up the space for injustice and inequity, and this is seen most vividly in recent debates about unfairness and racial profiling in the distribution and experience of police stops in the US and UK. How to regulate discretionary power is a challenging question, and this is especially so in the context of practices like stop-and-search/stop-and-frisk. The ability to stop people in the street and question them is central to policing as it is understood in many liberal democracies, but under conditions of unfairness and questionable efficacy – when the application of this particular police power appears unethical as well as ineffective – one can reasonably ask whether the power should be dropped or curtailed, and if curtailed, how this would work in practice.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2015 The Authors.
Divisions: Methodology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
K Law > K Law (General)
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2016 14:27
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2021 10:13

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics