Connected Policing: The Importance of Social Capital and Boundary Spanning in Australian Police Leadership

  • Victoria HerringtonEmail author
  • Deborah Blackman
  • Jacinta Carroll
  • Christine Owen


This chapter explores Australian police leadership at senior and middle management levels using the theoretical framework of social capital. It opens with a discussion of the Australian policing landscape, exploring how agencies and their leaders navigate the complexity of their roles in the context of state and Commonwealth architecture. It moves on to discuss the components of social capital, how such capital is developed, how it might be enhanced, and how police leadership in Australia invests in, and draws down on, social capital to aid the system. Finally the implications of the advent of the Department of Home Affairs—a super-ministry bringing together Commonwealth law enforcement departments (but not state police) launched in mid-2018 are examined. The authors explore the implications of this shift for the interface between state and Commonwealth policing, the potential tensions likely to be created across the policing space and consider how Australian police leadership—and investments in social capital—will need to adapt to maximize positive outcomes.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victoria Herrington
    • 1
    Email author
  • Deborah Blackman
    • 2
  • Jacinta Carroll
    • 3
  • Christine Owen
    • 4
  1. 1.Australian Institute of Police ManagementManlyAustralia
  2. 2.Public Service Research GroupSchool of Business, UNSW CanberraCampbellAustralia
  3. 3.National Security PolicyNational Security College, Australian National UniversityCampbellAustralia
  4. 4.Tasmanian Institute of Law Enforcement Studies, University of TasmaniaHobartAustralia

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