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Public confidence in criminal justice : a history and critique

Author: Elizabeth R Turner
Publisher: Cham : Palgrave Macmillan, 2017.
Series: Palgrave pivot.; Critical criminological perspectives.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
In this book, Liz Turner argues that survey methods have gained an unwarranted and unhealthy level of dominance when it comes to understanding how the public views the criminal justice system. The focus on measuring public confidence in criminal justice by researchers, politicians and criminal justice agencies has tended to prioritise the production of quantitative representations of general opinions, at the expense  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Additional Physical Format: Print version :
(OCoLC)1002128177
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Elizabeth R Turner
ISBN: 9783319678979 3319678973
OCLC Number: 1015215318
Description: 1 online resource
Contents: 1. Public confidence in criminal justice: what's the problem? --
2. Constructing public confidence: a chronology of the research agenda --
3. Deconstructing public confidence: the public confidence agenda as a governmental project --
4. Archaeology: surfaces of emergence for the public confidence agenda --
5. Genealogy: how the public confidence agenda got its 'hooks' into criminal justice --
6. Conclusion: researchers and the making of political worlds --
Appendix 1: A More Detailed Description and Critique of Some Studies of Public Confidence Completed in the Early 2000's --
Appendix 2: Approaching the Genealogical Analysis of Public Confidence.
Series Title: Palgrave pivot.; Critical criminological perspectives.
Responsibility: Elizabeth R. Turner.

Abstract:

In this book, Liz Turner argues that survey methods have gained an unwarranted and unhealthy level of dominance when it comes to understanding how the public views the criminal justice system. The focus on measuring public confidence in criminal justice by researchers, politicians and criminal justice agencies has tended to prioritise the production of quantitative representations of general opinions, at the expense of more specific, qualitative or deliberative approaches. This has occurred not due to any inherent methodological superiority of survey-based approaches, but due to the congruence of the survey-based, general measure of opinion with the prevailing neoliberal political tendency to engage with citizens as consumers. By identifying the historical conditions on which contemporary knowledge claims rest, and tracing the political power struggles out of which sprang the idea of public confidence in criminal justice as a real and measurable object, Turner shows that things could be otherwise. She also draws attention to the ways in which survey researchers have asserted their dominance over other approaches, suppressing convincing claims by advocates of deliberative methods that a better politics of crime and justice is possible. Ultimately, Turner concludes, researchers need to be more upfront about their political objectives, and more alert to the political responsibilities that go along with the making of knowledge claims. Providing a provocative critique of the dominant approaches to measuring public confidence, this timely study will be of special interest to scholars of the criminal justice system, research methods, and British politics.

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