International Journal of Advances in Philosophy

2021;  3(1): 1-6


Received: Dec. 6, 2020; Accepted: Jan. 5, 2021; Published: Jan. 15, 2021


America’s Reaction to the Global Financial Crisis

Elsie H. Dunnam

IICSE University, Wilmington, USA

Correspondence to: Elsie H. Dunnam , IICSE University, Wilmington, USA.


Copyright © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Scientific & Academic Publishing.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY).


This article brings a discussion about how the American police coped with the events involving the global financial crisis, which generated reduction of even 50% in their figures. The readership that would most benefit from the findings would be the own police, and the government. The discussion goes through insightful study of the sources, where at least three fronts of investment have been identified: working with the community, technology, and managerial change. Inside of working with the community, community policing of a certain type, and partnership policing clearly showed very positive, and quantifiable, plus quantified results in the consulted, and mentioned sources. Inside of technology, it was the Body-Worn Video, and the Domain Awareness System that played the same role, of reassuring us on the solidity of the results of the selected sources. The conclusion is that, despite the much that has changed in management, much more can change to produce an even greater amount of positivity, and certain strategies, such as foot patrols with Broken Windows Policy in hotspots, work better than others. The inferential work is based on Mathematical Logic, and the selected sources are studied through the lens of the top levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Keywords: Crisis, Management, Police, Community

Cite this paper: Elsie H. Dunnam , America’s Reaction to the Global Financial Crisis, International Journal of Advances in Philosophy, Vol. 3 No. 1, 2021, pp. 1-6. doi: 10.5923/j.ap.20210301.01.

1. Introduction

Some believe the crisis started in 2007 (Choi 2013, p. 65). Some pinned 2008 as the actual crisis (Zwiers, Bolt, & Kempen 2016, p. 664) time. The Global Financial Crisis seems to be a title that became a unique mark at a very determined point in time. Pautz (2017) says this time should be 2007, and 2008 (p. 191), but he says his article focuses on the time period 2007-2015; the start of the crisis, and the end of “Britain’s coalition government of Conservatives, and Liberal Democrats under David Cameron as Prime Minister which led Britain into an ‘age of austerity’ (p. 192).”
According to Hurley (2020, Major Assignment), the United Kingdom, Europe, Canada, America, and the Russian Federation dismissed, “disengaged, or retrenched” their police officers to a rate of about two million from 2010 to 2015 for believing cutting down on their figures made their nations be on top of their debts, and therefore more able to fight the “global financial crisis”.
This is the worst crisis since the 30s (Levy 2010, p. 234), and managers decided to invest in regulation, and auditing (Levy 2010, p. 238). Auditing focuses on councils, and their partners (Levy 2010, p. 238). As a result, the number of authorities was sometimes dramatically reduced: 44 to 9 local authorities in England in 2009 (Levy 2010, p. 238). In Scotland, one organisation, Police Scotland, was created in 2013 to substitute eight police constabularies, and their support agencies (Brown 2017, p. 7). With fewer authorities, and top managers acting as a group (chief executives) (Levy 2010, p. 238), solutions would take shorter to be put into practice, and would have to be more effective.
More effective solutions, and shorter time between theory, and practice is good because those nations still had to fight crime, and we then wonder about how America managed to do the same tasks with half of the manpower (Hurley 2020, Major Assignment): what was put there to address this issue?

2. Methods

The methods employed in this paper were critical literature review, and Bloom’s synthesis, and analysis (Pinheiro 2015, p. 136). Inferential work was based on mathematical logic (Pinheiro 2017, pp. 10-20). Some of the sources use data from surveys, and experimentation.

3. Development

Among remedies administered by America were investments in technology, working with the community (Willis 2005, p. 1315), and management-style changes (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, pp. 11-12).
Inside of working with the community, community policing, or community-oriented policing (Bureau of Justice Statistics 2020, para. 2), was a solution [(Willis 2005, p. 1315), (Xu, Fiedler, & Flaming 2005, pp. 173-176)]: police then stress foot patrol, and services to the community (Sarre & Prenzler 2018). Community-oriented policing (COP – (Makin & Marenin 2017, p. 421) usually comes as a response when the relationship between police, and the people is not going well (Cordner 2014, p. 2), and COP, in the United States, appears together with dramatic reduction in crime rates (Cordner 2014, p. 2).
Table 1. The Standardized Direct, Indirect, and Total Effects of Community Policing and Collective Efficacy Measures on Disorder, Crime, Citizen Fear, Quality of Life, and Satisfaction with the Police
The COP “model has been widely adopted in developed and democratic countries, and is most commonly offered as representing modern, progressive, and democratic policing” (Makin & Marenin 2017, p. 421). Wherever there is COP there is partnership, and co-production involving police, and the community (Makin & Marenin 2017, p. 422). When the state is functionally absent, maximum matching with true partnership occurs (Makin & Marenin 2017, p. 432). “We have yet to see the emergence of institutionalized, active partnerships between the police and the community as a whole and quite possibly never will at an institutional level” (Makin & Marenin 2017, p. 432). This is to say the state will always be functionally present, and The Broken Windows Policy is the closest thing to having no state involved.
The Broken Windows policy is part of COP: when police bothers about small crime, say vandalisation, people from the location, and surroundings notice that, and feel safer in that area as well as more comfortable with depending on police (Cordner 2014, p. 4). The community, under Broken Windows Policy, should see police as a group that literally facilitates “the repair of broken windows” (Sheptychi 1998, p. 488), thus a group that does foot patrols, and is friendly to residents.
If foot patrol focuses on ‘hot spots’ (locations with high rate of crime), the results are potential reduction on violent crime (Telep & Weisburd 2012, p. 349): “Intensive patrol in high gun crime areas can lead to reductions in gun-carrying, and gun-related violence” (Telep & Weisburd 2012, p. 340). Dramatic reduction in crime, a result from the 90s, could be the outcome if the Broken Windows Policy is adopted by foot patrollers (Telep & Weisburd 2012, p. 349). If, in addition, officers are assigned to neighbourhoods, the value of the investment is maximised (Kringen, Sedelmaier & Dlugolenski 2018, p. 218): a quasi-experiment happening in Connecticut, United States, New Haven Police Department, between July, and October of 2013, in a hotspot, returned a reduction in crime of 19% (overall result for the neighbourhood), and 36% (hotspots in the hotspot) with no signs of displacement (Kringen, Sedelmaier & Dlugolenski 2018, pp. 221-222). Foot patrols are then this valuable, but other community programs exist.
The other community programs, such as Neighbourhood Watch, generate mixed results – in the case of Neighbourhood Watch maybe because it empowers police (Savage 2007, p. 330), and the main need would be democratizing the process instead (Pinheiro 2020, pp. 1-5): some say the lowering in crime rates is meaningful; and some say it does not work (Telep & Weisburd 2012, p. 349). Neighbourhood Policing relies on “visibility, accessibility, and familiarity”, and focuses on “problem-solving in co-production with communities, and partner agencies” (Bullock 2013, p. 126). Some results brought a lot of pessimism to those believing the approach (‘Community Policing’ 2007, pp. 127-131), other results imply the approach is irrelevant, what matters is “procedural fairness” (Crowl 2017, p. 456), we are led to believe styles of COP are not being well separated when that happens (neighbourhood policing in general does not work, but hotspots with Broken Windows, and foot patrol, inside of neighbourhood policing, does. Fielding (2002, p. 159) exemplifies confusion between partnership, and COP, and Terpstra (2009, p. 70) talks about how much confusion the own police suffers from in what regards concepts), and mixed results are not as good as incontestable success, so that partnership police is where we go next.
Partnership policing seems to be a derivation of COP, which appeared, as a concept, in 1829 (Cordner 2014, p. 1). Partnership policing, and COP have many confluences, and partnership policing involves more formal agreements between police, and third parties, such as non-governmental agencies (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, p. 11).
The National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council is one of the most successful agencies in Australia (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, p. 5), and, thanks to it working in partnership with the police as well, not only with insurance companies (National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council 2020, para. 1), it is now returning $2.20 for each dollar invested: “a benefit cost ratio of 19:3” (National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council 2020, para. 1). The agency also “contributed to long-term downward trends in motor vehicle-related crime” (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, p. 5), and, to get these results, one needs to make good use of technology (Kriven & Ziersch 2007, p. 111).
Technology was a solution (Willis 2005, p. 1315): officers do think it improves results (Hartle 2015, p. 106), and, in potential, it has to be more beneficial than harmful (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, p. 11). Computers are told to have worked on their own for a good amount of time to produce important results for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (Operation Technologies Division 2010, para. 1-2). The capacity for sharing files with investigators anywhere in the globe, and track their changes is per se a gain for law enforcement (Perez 2012, para. 4). Yet that is just the beginning of the benefits, and many gadgets exist: Body-Worn Video (BWV – (Bowling & Iyer 2019, p. 1) is one more example.
BWV makes victims of domestic violence have better results at the courts, and be more protected, since their testimony is then no longer necessary (Bowling & Iyer 2019, pp. 11-12). Police also are more protected in their work routine (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, p. 11). Better situational awareness scores gives us one more argument to defend the use of visual technology that is wireless in police operations: “faster perception, comprehension, and prediction of events” (Hartle 2015, p. 105). Yet, “technological changes may not bring about easy and substantial improvements in police performance without significant planning and effort to adjust technological, and organizational frames” (Lum, Koper & Willis 2017, p. 157), so that there is a need to change management: only with significant changes in management will technology equate improvement.
Changes in management style were a solution: management for results, including concerns with caller’s satisfaction is what is currently happening (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, pp. 11-12). The term to designate these changes in management is New Public Management or NPM, and it includes the top manager of the agency being hired for a contract, and then not getting it renewed if the results are not good enough (Sarre & Prenzler 2018, p. 12). Management keeps on pushing for better results, and the results are measured through auditing of the type value for money plus reasoning involving efficiency through targets, and targets that include performance, and risk (Levy 2010, p. 238). It is a situation that leads to heavy limitations in the innovation, thus also entrepreneurial, business (Levy 2010, p. 238). That has to point at problems.
Most of the problems in management nowadays seem to be related to a top-down structure that is being preserved throughout the decades instead of dropped (maybe where empirical research has not made a mark yet – (Reiner 2016, p. 236): patrollers value the maintenance of public order less than their superiors (Gau & Gaines 2012, p. 45). Achievements in education, and attachment to those above them in the line of command seem to relate, in a meaningful manner, to influencing, so that managers of police can improve the group by simply improving hiring, and supervision (Gau & Gaines 2012, p. 45). Also Trotter, and Evans (2012, p. 270) conclude that supervision can be improved through small changes in the work routine of supervisors when performing studies about the New South Wales Juvenile Justice system. Lum, Koper, and Willis (2014, pp. 215-216), in addition, defend that more changes in management would yield results that are much better than those they currently have in the United States. Great ideas to address crime may actually come from simple techniques of management being applied to current police by current police (Ratcliff, Sorg, & Rose 2015, pp. 119-121), but partnerships return very quantifiable results, thus forming a group that is worth investigating each time.
One more good result was attained through a partnership between the New York City Police Department, and Microsoft, and that is the Domain Awareness System (DAS), since this partnership made the government save about fifty millions every year: the total was attained through using “an estimate of $100,000 annual salary and benefits per officer, a 50 percent increase in efficiency for crime analysis, and a five percent increase in efficiency for investigations” (Levine et al. 2017, p. 12), and DAS is a solution that involves technology, and partnership policing. DAS is “a network of sensors, databases, devices, software, and infrastructure that delivers tailored information and analytics to mobile devices, and precinct desktops” (Levine et al. 2017, p. 2). With DAS in place, “data from license plate readers, radiation detectors, 9-1-1 calls, public or private surveillance cameras, criminal records, incident reports, and predictive analytics can now all be organized chronologically in an easy-to-access and use format of words, maps or other interpretive means for aggregation and analysis” (Slahor, S. 2012, p. 16). “The platform is a way for the New York Police Department (NYPD) to have and use a consolidated system for the collecting and accessing of crime and counter-terrorism data in real time and near real time” (Slahor, S. 2012, p. 16).
Table 2. Descriptive Statistics for Variables Used in the Analysis (N = 268)

4. Conclusions & Recommendations

The American police invested at least in changes in management, technology, partnership policing, and COP to compensate the reduction in budget, and officers during the period 2010-2015.
Technology improves results to the side of victims, and police work: DAS, which is both partnership, and technology increase, saved the government tens of millions of dollars per year. In what regards BWV, “a UK Home Office Study reported a 22% reduction in the time devoted to paperwork, and case preparation due to evidence collected from BWV” (Bowling & Iyer 2019, p. 11). BWV brought a reduction of even 93% in complaints about officers (Bowling & Iyer 2019, p. 14). Even though the rate of complaints increased in some locations instead of decreasing, it seems that it has to do with size of the police, and nature of the complaint: small groups would have the rate reduced, and complaints about the use of force would definitely present a lower rate (Bowling & Iyer 2019, p. 14). This all points at advice on managerial directions.
Management can be improved through simple decisions, and procedures, such as improving hiring, and supervision to improve influencing, then improving the work routine of supervisors. The style of the policing is also important: Hotspots that got more foot patrols got more reduction in crime. To maximise results, the best investment is concentrating on hotspots of hotspots, hotspots, and their respective neighbourhoods, adopting the Broken Windows Policy, increasing the number of foot patrols, and assigning groups of officers in a fixed manner to those neighbourhoods. Research should always separate well one style of policing from another, and COP, in particular, can only be properly studied if types are separated in an exact manner.

5. Main Research Findings

The Global Financial Crisis started in August of 2007, and finished in 2008, but its causes, and implications go from at least 2007 to 2015.
Police reactions to the crisis are worth studying because we can learn from them, and optimise efforts more logically during similar future events.
Broken Windows can easily be treated as a strategy in top policing. That makes the population be more together with police if it is applied in hot spots, but the reduction of the crime rate is also non-negligible.
Body-Worn Video should also be treated as a strategy in top policing. It produces relief to the domestic violence victim’s suffering, and also helps them have a better result at the courts, therefore increases justice levels. Police is more protected in their work routine.
Partnerships with police also lead to impressive results, and if the state is functionally absent, the matching is better, and the partnership is truer.

6. Future Directions

These research results could again be split, this time with the focus of this paper: modelling things properly, organising data better, and creating indices to measure the efficacy of each strategy, but also to treat them in a more similar way. Whether the focus is on human rights, and suffering, or chances of individual victims, or expenditure, it is necessary to set up the same paradigms for the main strategies for police. After the paradigms are sorted, it is still necessary to establish a scale of importance for the strategy within the realm of the government, then of the population, then of the own police, and so on.


The author would like to thank the editors of this journal for their remarks, and suggestions.


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