Change or be changed: Diagnosing the readiness to change in the Canadian police sector [2017]

Concerns have emerged over the readiness of police agencies to adapt to change. To better understand why this might be the case, we used Lewin’s theory of change and an emic methodology to investigate the internal and external forces for and against change within this sector. Using a qualitative methodology we analysed the data from 103 interviews with key police and community stakeholders to identify the drivers and barriers to planned change. Examination of the resulting force field diagram revealed that: (1) community stakeholders feel the forces for change exceed the barriers, while police stakeholders perceive the reverse, (2) strong drivers of change are largely external to the police service, (3) key barriers to change were internal to the police service, and (4) police culture is a strong barrier to change. We end by offering suggestions on how this information can be used to manage change in this sector better.

Linda Duxbury, Craig Bennell, Michael Halinski, Steven Murphy
The Police Journal: Theory, Practice and Principles, Vol 91, Issue 4, 2018