Please contact the Organizational Studies Program with any questions.
The rise of the Black Lives Matter movement has brought renewed public attention to an enduring social problem in America: racial disparities in policing, and gaps in police-community trust. Where do these inequities come from? What processes contribute to disparities in policing? And what can we do to address them? The overarching goal of this course is to get “under the hood” of racial inequality in policing through organizational analysis: to identify the institutional and individual contributors to disparities, so that we can combat it.
One specific aim of this course is to introduce students to theoretical and empirical studies of disparities in policing. We will examine research from psychology, sociology, legal studies, and organizational behavior to understand how each of these perspectives sheds light on different aspects of race and police-community relations. In doing so, we will connect this issue to broader theories of organizational theory (discretion, organizational change) and psychology (implicit bias, procedural justice). A second goal of this course is to connect this research to social practice. In the second half of the course, we will examine the empirical support for interventions aimed at building trust and closing gaps in policing. Alongside these readings, we will have discussions with stakeholders working on these issues from a range of positions and perspectives: within law enforcement, community activism, policy change, and research.
This class is a meet-together between ORGSTUDY 495.001 and PubPol 475.008. If the seats in one section are taken, check on the other side for availability.