Performance monitoring of Australian drug law enforcement agencies: Impediments to and prospects for reform

Caitlin Hughes, Steve James

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Attention to performance monitoring of Australian drug law enforcement (DLE) agencies has increased in recent years. Yet history has shown efforts often come to nothing. Indeed the status quo — where there are undefined goals and scant reliable indicators of performance — has been maintained, despite 25 years of calls for improvement. The purpose of this article is to refocus attention from how Australian DLE performance monitoring ought to be measured, to the impediments to and prospects for reform. By critically examining the historical and policy drivers underpinning Australian DLE performance monitoring, five impediments to reform are put forward, including political unwillingness to expose the true capacities of DLE. This article contends that: while violating best-practice principles, the under-measurement of DLE suits various institutional and political rationales; and unless these drivers are addressed efforts to improve performance monitoring will continue to fail or fall short. Strategies for facilitating reform are outlined, including targeted advocacy
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-312
Number of pages18
JournalCurrent Issues in Criminal Justice
Volume23
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

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