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Policing Ethnography: The role of narrative in researching and writing about policing


Northumbria University

About the Conference 

The conference will explore the role and status of narrative in policing itself and in ethnographic police research writings.

Much of the literature and policy-based discussion about policing demonstrates that story telling is a central device within police occupational culture and organisational identity. Moreover, fictional and non-fictional representations of police work (both written and visual) shape public and practitioner understandings of policing in ways that tend to prioritise action-oriented law enforcement over other aspects of policing.

Policing Ethnography provides a platform for emerging research broadly related to narrative in policing, including applied work on occupational identity, accounts of police work, the nature of writing police ethnography, and the status of ethnography in wider debates about evidence and ‘what works’.

Conference Conveners

  • Professor Mike Rowe (Northumbria University)
  • Dr Megan O'Neill (Dundee University)
  • Dr Paul Quinton (College of Policing)

Keynote Speakers

  • Dr Merlijn van Hulst, Tilburg Institute of Governance. Title: “An Ethnography of Narrative in Policing
  • Dr Anna Souhami, University of Edinburgh Law School. Title: ‘‘Here, there is nothing’: understanding narratives of policing in the remote Northern islands of Scotland

Call for Papers

Is now closed - deadline for submission was 31st October 2018. 

Conference Programme

The final conference programme is now available - download here

Getting to the Conference

Registration opens at 9.15am on 24 January, in the foyer of the Business and Law building (No. 3 on this map). The postcode for the university is NE1 8ST. The campus is a fifteen minute walk from the city centre, the nearest metro stations are Manors or Haymarket. There is no parking available on campus and so you will need to use public car parking if driving. If arriving by train then it’ll take ten minutes in a taxi. 

Images from the event can be found here








Event Details

Northumbria University
City Campus
Newcastle upon Tyne


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