International examples and developments in crime prevention

Valérie Sagant
International Centre for the Prevention of Crime ICPC

International Centre for the Prevention of Crime ICPC, Canada

Since the adoption of the Guidelines for the Prevention of Crime by the United Nations Economic and Social Council in 2002, some strong trends have emerged in the field of prevention. A growing number of strategies and national action plans have been developed and multilateral exchange networks created. Policies and interventions in prevention have been increasingly knowledge-based, independently analyzed and reviewed in an environment that promotes evaluation. Tools are used with more frequency and leaders are more likely to support crime prevention efforts through, for example, safety audits, crime mapping and observatories. These moves have also influenced the role of a number of actors, altering traditional roles of police forces, the justice system and correctional services. These institutions have had to adapt their methods and objectives, more often working towards the establishment of partnerships and collaborative projects. Meeting demands has further created a need for the development and sometimes institutionalization of entirely new professions and services in community safety. However, local and community actors remain at the heart of prevention endeavors. In fact, one may observe the highest level of activity and capacity for innovation at the city and community level, despite a frequent lack of resources. This presentation provides an international overview of developments while not ignoring unique contexts. A discussion of promising initiatives in the fields of women’s safety, youth safety, and safety in public spaces highlights regional differences, challenges faced, and lessons that can be learned.


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