The Private Sector and Criminal Justice: An Introduction

  • Stuart Lister
  • Anthea Hucklesby


This introductory chapter contextualises the wide range of developments and debates discussed in this collection of essays. This is done in three ways. The first is by emphasising the contentious nature of debates exploring the relationship between the private sector and criminal justice. The second is by suggesting that developments in contemporary law and policy in criminal justice and the role of the private sector have been significantly influenced by the critical shift of the post-modern era from ‘government to governance’. This move has resulted in the act of governing no longer being tied to monopolistic ‘command and control’ modes of government but instead drawing on the capacities of a more pluralised or ‘nodal’ set of institutional formations, including public, private and voluntary sector agencies. The third is by identifying the parameters of key debates and competing perspectives. In so doing, the chapter demonstrates that the entanglements of state and market in how criminal justice responses are formulated and operationalised generate debates that attend to the very heart of the political, legal and social order.


  1. Annison, J., Burke, L., & Senior, P. (2014). Transforming Rehabilitation: Another Example of English ‘Exceptionalism’ or a Blueprint for the Rest of Europe? European Journal of Probation, 6(1), 6–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bovens, M. (2005). Public Accountability. In E. Ferlie, L. E. Lynn, & C. Pollitt (Eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Public Management (pp. 182–208). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Bureau of Justice Statistics. (2016). Prisoners in 2015. Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.Google Scholar
  4. Christie, N. (2000). Crime Control as Industry: Towards Gulags, Western Style? London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  5. Cohen, S. (1985). Visions of Social Control. Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  6. Corcoran, M., & Hucklesby, A. (2016). Introduction. In A. Hucklesby & M. Corcoran (Eds.), The Voluntary Sector and Criminal Justice (pp. 1–11). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  7. Crawford, A. (1997). The Local Governance of Crime: Appeals to Community and Partnerships. Oxford: Clarendon.Google Scholar
  8. Crawford, A., & Hucklesby, A. (2013). Introduction. In A. Crawford & A. Hucklesby (Eds.), Legitimacy and Compliance in Criminal Justice (pp. 8–28). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  9. Crawford, A., & Lister, S. (2004a). The Extended Policing Family: Visible Patrols in Residential Areas. York: Joseph Rowntree Foundation.Google Scholar
  10. Crawford, A., & Lister, S. (2004b). The Patchwork Shape of Reassurance Policing in England and Wales: Integrated Local Security Quilts or Frayed, Fragmented and Fragile Tangled Webs? Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management, 27(3), 413–430.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Crawford, A., & Lister, S. (2006). Additional Security Patrols: Notes from the Marketplace. Policing and Society., 16(2), 164–188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Criminal Justice Joint Inspectorate (CJJI). (2008). A Complicated Business: An Inspection of Electronic Monitoring, HMI Probation, HMI Constabulary and HMI Courts Administration, Joint Inspection by HMI Probation, HMI Court Administration and HMI Constabulary. Manchester: HMIP.Google Scholar
  13. Criminal Justice Joint Inspectorate (CJJI). (2012). It’s Complicated: The Management of Electronically Monitored Curfews. A Follow-Up Inspection of Electronically Monitored Curfews. Manchester: HMIP.Google Scholar
  14. Dolovich, S. (2009). How Privatization Thinks: The Case of Prisons. In J. Freeman & M. Minow (Eds.), Government by Contract: Outsourcing and American Democracy (pp. 128–147). Cambridge, MA/London: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  15. Edwards, J. (2016, August 29). U.S. to Review Use of Private Immigration Prisons, Shares Slide. Reuters. Available at Accessed 28 Nov 2016.
  16. Freeman, J., & Minow, M. (2009). Introduction: Reframing the Outsourcing Debates. In J. Freeman & M. Minow (Eds.), Government by Contract: Outsourcing and American Democracy (pp. 1–22). Cambridge, MA/London: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Garland, D. (2001). The Culture of Control. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Hough, C. (2016). Transforming Rehabilitation and Its Impact on a Locally-Based Rehabilitation Programme for Black and Minority Ethnic and Muslim Offenders. European Journal of Probation, 8(2), 68–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Jacobs, J. (1994). Systems of Survival. A Dialogue on the Moral Foundations of Commerce and Politics. New York: Vintage Books.Google Scholar
  20. Johnston, L. (1992). The Rebirth of Private Policing. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  21. Johnston, L. (2000). Policing Britain: Risk, Security and Governance. Harlow: Pearson.Google Scholar
  22. Johnston, L., & Shearing, C. (2003). Governing Security. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  23. Johnston, L., Button, M., & Williamson, T. (2008). Police, Governance and the Private Finance Initiative. Policing and Society, 18(3), 225–244.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Jones, T., & Newburn, T. (1998). Public Policing and Private Security. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
  25. Jones, T., & Newburn, T. (2005). Comparative Criminal Justice Policy-Making in the United States and the United Kingdom: The Case of Private Prisons. The British Journal of Criminology, 45(1), 58–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Loader, I. (1997). Policing and the Social. The British Journal of Sociology, 48(1), 1–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Mashaw, J. L. (2006). Accountability and Institutional Design: Some Thoughts on the Grammar of Governance. In M. W. Dowdle (Ed.), Public Accountability: Designs, Dilemmas and Experiences (pp. 115–157). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  28. Materni, M. (2013). Criminal Punishment and the Pursuit of Justice. British Journal of American Legal Studies, 2(1), 263–304.Google Scholar
  29. Matthews, R. (1989). Privatization in Perspective. In R. Matthews (Ed.), Privatizing Criminal Justice (pp. 1–23). London: Sage.Google Scholar
  30. Mulgan, R. (1997). Contracting Out and Accountability. Australian Journal of Public Administration, 56(4), 106–116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. National Audit Office (NAO). (2006). The Electronic Monitoring of Adult Offenders. London: The Stationary Office.Google Scholar
  32. National Audit Office (NAO). (2013). The Ministry of Justice Electronic Monitoring Contracts (HC 737, Session 2013–14). London: NAO. Available at: Accessed 27 Mar 2017.
  33. National Audit Office (NAO). (2014). Home Office/Ministry of Justice Transforming Contract Management (HC 268, Session 2014–15). London: NAO. Available at: Accessed 27 Mar 2017.
  34. Osborne, D., & Gaebler, T. (1992). Reinventing Government: How the Entrepreneurial Spirit Is Transforming the Public Sector. Reading: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar
  35. Prison Reform Trust. (2016, September). Bromley Briefing: Prison Factfile. London: PRT.Google Scholar
  36. Rhodes, R. A. W. (1994). The Hollowing Out of the State: The Changing Nature of the Public Service in Britain. The Political Quarterly, 65(2), 138–151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Rhodes, R. A. W. (1997). Understanding Governance: Policy Networks, Governance, Reflexivity, and Accountability. Milton Keynes: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Rose, N. (2000). Government and Control. The British Journal of Criminology, 40(2), 321–339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Shearing, C., & Stenning, P. (1987). Say “Cheese”!: The Disney Order that Is Not so Mickey Mouse. In C. Shearing & P. Stenning (Eds.), Private Policing (pp. 317–323). London: Sage.Google Scholar
  40. Spitzer, S., & Scull, A. (1977). Privatisation and Capitalist Development: The Case of Private Police. Social Problems, 25(1), 18–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Starr, P. (1988). The Meaning of Privatization. Yale Law and Policy Review, 6(1), 6–41.Google Scholar
  42. Tankebe, J., & Liebling, A. (Eds.). (2013). Legitimacy and Criminal Justice. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  43. The Freedonia Group. (2017). Global Security Services Market by Type, Market and Region (12th ed.). Available at: Accessed 28 Jan 2017.
  44. Vincent-Jones, P. (2006). The New Public Contracting: Regulation, Responsiveness, Relationality. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Weintraub, J. (1995). Varieties and Vicissitudes of Public Space. In P. Kasinitz (Ed.), Metropolis: Centre and Symbol of Our Times. Basingstoke: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  46. White, A. (2010). The Politics of Private Security: Regulation, Reform and Re-legitimation. Basingstoke: Palgrave.Google Scholar
  47. White, A. (2014). Post-crisis Policing and Public–Private Partnerships: The Case of Lincolnshire Police and G4S. The British Journal of Criminology, 54(6), 1002–1022.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Zedner, L. (2004). Criminal Justice. Oxford: Clarendon.Google Scholar
  49. Zedner, L. (2006). Policing Before and After the Police: The Historical Antecedents of Contemporary Crime Control. The British Journal of Criminology, 46(1), 78–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stuart Lister
    • 1
  • Anthea Hucklesby
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LeedsLeedsUK

Personalised recommendations