Walmsley, Edward John (2014) Situational crime prevention: the public‘s engagement with, support for, and their opinions on the effectiveness of SCP techniques and measures within a residential setting. Masters thesis, University of Huddersfield.

There was little previous literature assessing public opinions of specific crime prevention strategies. Therefore the aim of this study was to investigate whether or not the public engage with situational crime prevention (SCP) techniques and measures, whether they support it, and whether or not they believe it to be effective. These main three opinions were then tested against four factors: area of residence; socio-demographic features; victimisation; and fear of crime.

The study used a quantitative methodology and collected survey data from 196 participants from two separate locations of opposing crime rates within Kirklees, West Yorkshire. The study found that in general the sample strongly engaged with, supported, and felt SCP techniques and measures within their area of residence to be effective, although the latter measure was unconvincing. A key finding was that all three factors had positive correlations indicating that engagement can increase support and opinions on effectiveness and vice versa. Evidence was found to show that the four factors effected opinions on the effectiveness of SCP, however, no conclusive evidence was found to show that area of residence, socio-demographic features, victimisation, and fear of crime significantly affect engagement and support of SCP. Further results did indicate though, that the public were in favour of a number of Crime Prevention through Environmental Design features, especially improved community cohesion.

As a result of the findings, the study suggests a number of policy implications, such as increased community cohesion and educating the public on the positive effects and success of SCP implementation. As well as this, future research should concentrate on exploring fear of crime: in particular do security measures increase it and if so can preventative initiatives such as Designing out Crime and Secured by Design be effective in reducing it.

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