Public Organization Review

, Volume 15, Issue 1, pp 139–155 | Cite as

Examining the Effects of Agency Accreditation on Police Officer Behavior

  • Richard R. JohnsonEmail author


The policy of accreditation of criminal justice organizations has grown over the last four decades. Some advocates for accreditation claim that it facilitates organizational change at all levels of the organization. To date, however, little empirical research has examined these claims, especially within criminal justice agencies. While accreditation leads agencies to adopt formal policies, the previous literature on street-level bureaucrat behavior would suggest rank-and-file employees are unlikely to follow these formal policies as intended. The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) is the accrediting body for law enforcement agencies in North America, and part of the formal policies CALEA accreditation requires regard engagement in community oriented policing. The present study examined whether officers on CALEA accredited agencies differed from officers with agencies not seeking accreditation, with regard to their engagement in community policing activities. The findings revealed that agency accreditation was not associated with the degree to which officers engaged in community oriented policing activities.


CALEA Accreditation Police Management Supervision Community policing Public policy Organizational behavior 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Criminal JusticeUniversity of ToledoToledoUSA

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