Police in Transition

Essays on the Police Forces in Transition Countries
Out of Print
Publication date: 
267 pages

The police forces of the transition countries in Central and Eastern Europe have to undergo profound reform to be able to respond to the needs of society; to serve the public and not just the government, and to prove that they can effectively combat crime.

This volume is the result of a survey by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee concerning the mode and extent of changes police forces of the post-communist countries have undergone since 1989 - 1990. Information is provided about the relevant tasks, organization, personnel, accountability, and international relations of the national police forces and about the coercive measures they are entitled to use.

Written by internationally acknowledged experts of policing and representatives of human-rights organizations, Police in Transition deals with the questions of transition, European trends in the governance of the police, the relationship between police and criminality, the role of the police in the constitutional framework, the limits of policing, police brutality, civilian oversight of the police and the possibilities of a democratic reform of police forces in Central and Eastern Europe.

This timely book offers invaluable information for those involved with human rights, criminology, sociology, justice, and for other members of the law enforcement community.


Introduction (Ferenc Kõszeg)

Police and Transition

The Questions of Transition (István Szikinger)

The Impact of Transition: A Comparison of Post-Communist Societies with Earlier 'Societies in Transition' (Robert I. Mawby)

Comparative Studies and Country Analyses

Police Organization and Accountability: A Comparative Study (Renate Weber)

The Police in the Constitutional Framework: The Limits of Policing (Andrzej Rzeplinski)

Policing in Transition Countries Compared with Standards in the European Union: Hungary-Where Dreams Are Not Fulfilled (Miklós Benke)

Police Governance in Romania (Manuela Stefanescu)

The Challenges of Transition as Seen by the Police

The Romanian Police and Challenges of Transition (Pavel Abraham)

The Political Changeover and the Police (Géza Finszter)

Models of Policing

Policing a Diversity of Cultures: Community Policing in Transforming Societies (Alan Wright)

Target Areas of Police Reform (Anita Hazenberg)

Oversight and Accountability

The Role of NGOs in Civilian Oversight of the Police (Mark A.Gissiner)

Monitoring Police Detention: Experiences with Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement Agencies (Ferenc Kõszeg)

The Police and Non-Governmental Organizations in Poland (Andrzej Kremplewski)

Civil Liability and Police Accountability in the United States (Jerome H. Skolnick)

Police Brutality

Police Brutality and Police Torture (Budimir Babovic)

Addressing Police Violence in Bulgaria: The Human Relations Perspective (Svetlozar Vassilev)


The Budapest Recommendations

List of Contributors