Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Identifier

2632

Date

2016

Date of Award

4-21-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Major

Political Science

Committee Chair

Eric Groenendyk

Committee Member

Sharon Stanley

Committee Member

Michael Sances

Abstract

Can institutional reforms increase trust? Law enforcement is a government institution that people interact with regularly, especially their local police departments. In communities that experience officer-involved shootings of civilians, trust in the police is low. In an effort to increase trust, advocates often propose law enforcement review boards that can independently investigate complaints against officers and make recommendations to law enforcement agencies to improve relations with the public. To determine whether review boards truly repair trust, I conduct interviews with activists in four cities across the US, and field a 230+ respondent survey experiment to assess the effects of review boards on public perceptions of trust and efficacy. I find that while law enforcement review boards increase the likelihood of reporting experiencing excessive force, they do not affect trust in government or the police, and in some cases may actually decrease perceptions of governmental efficacy.

Comments

Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.

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