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Secured by design - an investigation of its history, development and future role in crime reduction.

Armitage, Rachel (2004) Secured by design - an investigation of its history, development and future role in crime reduction. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

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    Abstract

    Secured by Design (SBD) is an award scheme, managed by the Association of Chief Police
    Officers (ACPO) and supported by the Home Office, which aims to encourage house developers to design homes so as to minimise the crime opportunities which they present.
    Unlike many crime reduction measures, particularly those addressing the behaviour of
    offenders or potential offenders, the SBD initiative is proactive - the aim being to intervene prior to a crime problem emerging as opposed to reacting after the event. The implementation of SBD requirest he co-operation of a variety of agenciesf rom police and local authorities to architects and housing developers,and the mechanisms through which it aims to reduce crime have the potential to impact upon the victim, the offender and the location. Recent legislation,in the form of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and the Human Rights Act 1998, have placedcrime reduction on the agenda of many agencies for whom the issue had historically been of little importance. In the current climate of multi-agency working, initiatives such as SBD have
    the potential to flourish, but do they actually impact upon crime, disorder and the fear of
    crime, and are they being used to their maximum potential? This thesis addresses the past
    (history), present (current practice) and future (potential refinements) of SBD. How did
    planning become encapsulated in to criminology?Does SBD reduce crime, disorder and the fear
    of crime?What are the current weaknesses within SBD and how can the initiative be improved?
    The findings presented within the thesis reveal that properties built to the SBD standard
    experience lower levels of crime (and their resident's lower levels of fear of crime) than Non-SBD estates matched according to age, housing tenure, location and environmental factors.
    Whilst the difference in crime rates is not strongly statistically significant, the improving
    performance of the scheme suggests that a more recent sample would reveal a stronger
    relationship between SBD status and crime levels.
    Having established that SBD estates confer a crime reduction advantage the thesis focuses upon
    identifying how the scheme can be improved as well as the enablers and constraints which exist
    for those within the social and private sector in deciding whether (or not) to build to the SBD
    standard. Areas of improvement include ensuring that the scheme implements its own
    principles, incorporating repeat victimisation packages in to its standards and considering the
    threat to revoke the scheme for estates found failing to maintain the SBD standards. Levers to
    encourage social and private sector developers to build to the SBD standard include enhanced
    funding from the Housing Corporation, the appeal of additional security for homebuyers and
    the savings incurred through reduced levels of crime and disorder.
    Continuing its improvement orientation, the thesis presents a risk assessment mechanism to be
    used by crime reduction practitioners as a means of idenffying which properties will become
    vulnerable to crime if built (therefore allowing them to challenge planning applications)or in
    the case of properties already developed, allowing resources to be directed towards properties at most risk. The environmental factors which emerge as associated with elevated crime levels (and therefore score highly on the checklist presented)suggest that higher levels of movement past a property are generally associated with higher levels of risk. Thus in the somewhat heated debate about the role of permeability in enabling crime, the general thrust of the data suggests that high permeability (as proxied by the presence footpaths, levels of pedestrian and vehicular movement and road network) is indeed associated with higher levels of crime.

    Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
    Additional Information: EThOS Persistent ID uk.bl.ethos.411895
    Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
    H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
    Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
    School of Human and Health Sciences > Applied Criminology Centre
    Depositing User: Sharon Beastall
    Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2010 14:19
    Last Modified: 16 Dec 2010 11:14
    URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/6912

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