SO0902A – Sociology Project Proposal Plan
Leigh J. Allen Student Number:
Close-circuit Television as a means of situational crime prevention analysing effectiveness within city centre locations in Scotland.
Since the early 1990’s Britain has seen a very substantial public and private investment in open-street close circuit television surveillance. The main justification for this has been the assumed ability of close circuit television to decrease both crime and the fear of crime in predominantly inner city areas (Short & Ditton, 1998). With Britain becoming a place almost always caught on videotape, using an estimated 4.2 million CCTV cameras and the average citizen recorder 300 times a day, it is an area of great debate. Opinion however is divided about the true effect cameras have on reducing crime, with some analysis suggesting the overall impact is less than impressive, yet Home Office Minister Lord Falconer insists cameras can make a “significant” difference on crime levels.
I will now provide a brief history of the emergence of the Situational Crime Prevention perspective and how Britain has arrived at this vast number of recording equipment. The use of cameras derives from various theoretical perspectives developed during the last 40 years. The first was that of Jane Jacobs, who was behind the emergence of ‘environmental prevention’, which argued against the building of high rise public housing complexes stating they ‘invited’ crime through poor design. A decade later, criminologist Ray Jeffery (1971) expanded upon this and we began to see the emergence of community based crime prevention programs such as neighborhood or block watch. Situational Crime Prevention, the most promising movement, came via the work of Ronald Clark. Whilst working at the Home Office in London, Clark drew upon these previous considerations of crime prevention and saw SCP as a method of reducing the...