Published: December 2009
For policing in democratic nations there is an assumed tension between “crime control” and “due process”, effectively between getting things done, and getting things done properly. For public policing to be effective, the public needs to have confidence in policing decisions; that these decisions have legitimacy in that they are carried out in the public’s interest and follow rule of law principles. In the contemporary climate of globalization, in terms of criminal behaviour and international and trans-national enforcement arrangements, developed nations should lead by ‘rule of law’ example. In this chapter our focus is on policing in four developed nations: Germany, Japan, Switzerland and France. We take the view that, without educating the police at home, such nations are less equipped to implement the rule of law.
This chapter considers the education and training of the public police from a rule of law perspective, in terms of trainee selection, the background philosophy of training, general organization and curriculum. The chapter draws largely from a series of interviews, observations and conversations conducted by one of the authors between 1998 and 2001 in each of the four countries. This has been supplemented by evidence from the research literature.
To summarize the findings, all four countries have an increasing emphasis on community in their training. In terms of recruitment, it is important to have recruits that agree with rule of law messages. This may be possible via psychological testing (Switzerland) or greater academic emphasis (France and Japan). A better understanding of minority issues and rule of law application may be possible simply by recruiting more from minority groups (Germany). Across the four countries there appear to be three distinct training philosophies: the law and democracy (Germany); community and citizen involvement (Japan and Switzerland); and human rights and multiculturalism (France). Rule of law messages are apparent in all three approaches. Where the four countries appear to be heading in the right direction is in their increased professionalism and work to make the police more representative. Professionalism is important in order to improve or maintain public confidence. The quality of training and education that officers receive is central to this. This chapter considers the education and training of the public police from a rule of law perspective, in terms of trainee selection, the background philosophy of training, general organization, and curriculum. It draws largely from a series of interviews, observations, and conversations conducted by one of the authors between 1998 and 2001 in each of the four countries Japan, France, Switzerland, and Germany) and supplemented by evidence from the research literature.
Criminal Justice Process and Institutions