This paper examines the effectiveness of a British-funded project that introduced context-specific community policing into two areas of a city in Ukraine.
The 3-year project (May 2000-May 2003) was administered by the British Council (Ukraine) and implemented by the University of Leicester ( United Kingdom) in collaboration with the National University of Internal Affairs (Kharkiv, Ukraine). The project’s goals were to introduce a number of community-policing schemes selected to fit the local context and then measure the effects they had on police-community relations and citizen involvement in crime prevention. The project was implemented in two contrasting areas within Kharkiv, one of the largest industrial centers in Eastern Ukraine. The project was conducted in three phases: background research, which included a survey of residents and police and an assessment of current levels of crime, fear of crime, attitudes toward the police, and the status of police-community relations; implementation; and evaluation. Implementation efforts involved reorganization of the police in accordance with community-policing principles, the development of neighborhood watch schemes, volunteer patrols, target hardening to prevent burglary, beat officer-citizen meetings, and school liaison schemes. This paper presents findings from the evaluation phase of the project. Evaluation data, which were collected in 2000 and 2002, focused on public awareness and participation in the schemes, as well as the extent of changes in public perceptions of contacts with militia, readiness to cooperate , trust, and precautions taken to protect property. Overall, the project indicates that some of the initiatives of the community-policing model can be implemented in a post-Soviet state. Public perceptions of the police can be modestly improved, as can citizen readiness to cooperate with the police. 8 tables, 14 notes, and 25 references