Public Opinions About the Police: Experiences From Eastern and Western Europe

Sanja Kutnjak Ivkovich, Harvard University

This paper examines public views about the police in the countries in transition and compares them with the views about the police in Western democracies. Using the data from the International Crime Victimization Survey, the paper analyzes citizens' satisfaction with the police in general and satisfaction with the way the police handle reported cases. The results suggest that the attitudes about the police in the European countries in transition (still) differ from those held by the respondents from the European democracies. The differences in the attitudes do not extend uniformly to all crimes; they are more pronounced for property crimes than for sexual crimes or violent crimes.

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Updated 05/20/2006