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Determinants of satisfaction with police in a developing country: a randomised vignette study

Nivette, Amy E., Akoensi, Thomas D (2017) Determinants of satisfaction with police in a developing country: a randomised vignette study. Policing and Society, 29 (4). pp. 471-487. ISSN 1043-9463. E-ISSN 1477-2728. (doi:10.1080/10439463.2017.1380643)


This study examines the effects of three theoretical factors representing both process-based and outcome-based dimensions of police actions on attitudes towards police using an experimental vignette design. We constructed two vignettes depicting citizens’ plausible encounters with police in an urban setting in a developing country (i.e. Accra, Ghana) and varied the level of police procedural justice, measured by quality of treatment, lawfulness, measured by whether or not a bribe is present, and effectiveness, measured by whether or not the offender was caught. In line with previous research, we find that dimensions of police procedural justice, lawfulness, and effectiveness all increase citizens’ satisfaction. However, we find that in certain situations, unlawfulness and ineffectiveness can undermine any positive influence of procedural justice policing on satisfaction. These findings have implications for criminal justice institutions seeking to improve relations with citizens and boost satisfaction and ultimately legitimacy.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/10439463.2017.1380643
Uncontrolled keywords: Police legitimacy, procedural justice, effectiveness, corruption, vignettes
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research
Depositing User: Thomas D. Akoensi
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2017 09:01 UTC
Last Modified: 22 Jan 2020 16:06 UTC
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