Australian Institute of Criminology

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Regional organisation for crime prevention delivery

Peter Homel

Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, July 2005

Experience from across the world is proving that programs for the effective delivery of crime prevention outcomes need to be a combination of national and statewide measures together with carefully targeted local initiatives (Sherman et al. 2003). This is because some of our important crime problems will be most amenable to action at a central level (e.g. electronic crime, fraud prevention, the prevention of organised crime) while others will be more responsive to local action (e.g. reducing domestic burglary, anti-social behaviour, etc.).

However, experience is also showing that joining up the efforts of central agencies and local authorities and communities is also extremely important if the benefits of crime reduction and prevention efforts are to be maximised. Unfortunately, the history of these relationships is not always good and across the world there is a constant process of searching for the most effective approach.

One such approach, which is particularly important in the Australian context, is the use of regional management processes. This is particularly important in Australia because of our federal system of government and our relatively small population and large distances.