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Introduction and description of the background to this issue, referring to policy strategies and priorities, previous reports, high profile cases or incidents etc.

Policing and Punishment – SA1 Proposal for Change


The Mayor of London and the Commissioner of the Police of the Metropolis have identified a series of problems within contemporary policing that need to be addressed. They have established a commission to investigate six core areas for improvement and they are looking for research evidence to help them make the right changes. You have been tasked with researching one of these areas and making recommendations for a different way of doing things that will provide a better service for Londoners.

The areas they want to see improved are:

  • Stop and Search
  • Crime Prevention and Public Reassurance
  • Recruitment and the Representativeness of the Metropolitan Police
  • Use of Weapons
  • Treatment of Domestic Violence
  • The Policing of Demonstrations

You will need to provide evidence (i.e. references to the literature and data) to back up the descriptive elements of this work and to support the proposals for change you will make.

Bear in mind that you are proposing a change that it is within the power of the Mayor and Commissioner to make. This means you are looking at changing practices, procedures, recruitment, training, and perhaps even attitudes and culture, but you cannot propose a change in the law: that lies in the hands of the legislature (Parliament).

Your essay should be 2000 words in length excluding the reference list (presented in the Harvard style) and might include:

  1. Introduction and description of the background to this issue, referring to policy strategies and priorities, previous reports, high profile cases or incidents etc.


  1. Description of the way this aspect of policy is implemented currently, considering:
  2. methods
  3. partnership working, if any
  4. value for money
  5. public and media concern or interest
  6. The proposal for change which may include changing the priority of this issue; addressing specific problems; or improving this area of policy.


  1. Evidence to back up your proposal. Has this been successfully tried in another country, for a different group of people, in a different institution? What is the evidence that it will improve anything?



  1. Identification of the potential criticisms and risks that exist for this proposal for change e.g. what are the resource implications, the practical obstacles, what evidence is there of public or expert support for this change?


  1. Description of the timescales for implementation and the evaluation strategy for the proposal for change.

See assessment criteria below for further guidance on what you will be graded on.

 Grading Criteria:

  You should:

  • Consider a proposal for change that is feasible and achievable
  • Demonstrate an awareness of why the choice of issue for change warrants attention
  • Provide an evidence based background and assessment on the chosen issue
  • Provide a clear rationale for change
  • Outline and provide detail on the proposal for change
  • Show critical consideration and analytical skills of the benefits and potential limitations of the proposal for change
  • Demonstrate a good awareness of the academic literature in the chosen area
  • Write a clear, well-written, well-organised and accurately referenced essay



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