Doing What Needs to be Done, Qualitative Management and Accountability(Pages: 11-32)

Tom van Dijk, Paul van Musscher and Peter Versteegh*

Peter Versteegh, Postbox 264, 2501 CG the Hague, the Netherlands


In the deeper undercurrents of public opinion, since 2006, there has already been a desire for „association‟, „connection‟ and „togetherness‟. This desire is specifically expressed in an explosion of citizens‟ initiatives. In this context, there is a growing need for a more deliberative democracy, in which not only representation is involved, but especially reciprocity as well. In this, a different manner of accountability is appropriate: not just afterwards on the basis of figures, but much more qualitative, interpretative and continuous. This dialogic manner of accountability is precisely appropriate for the police, who are so dependent for their effectiveness on good, reciprocal contact with citizens. Wilt the so-called „B3W matrix‟, the Hague Police Service introduced a qualitative method of safety management and accountability that is appropriate in the current time and is intended to contribute towards a sustainable decrease in crime and unsafety. By basing the day-to-day work of the police on a coordinated combination of evidence-based safety strategies, problem-oriented policing, intelligence-led policing and community policing („The Best of Three Worlds‟), the police do as much as possible what society desires. This expressly concerns leadership and speed of action as well if necessary, not only of the police but also of the authorities. Partly in view of the social development discussed in this article into a participation society and our experiences in the past years with the implementation of The Best of Three Worlds (abbreviated as B3W), there is now enough reason to choose radically in favor of citizen participation as the third guiding strategy for the police, and also accept its consequences. We argue here for a Dutch police that continues to develop into a more problem-oriented police service, locally connected and context driven. In short: a police service that does what needs to be done.


problem oriented policing, intelligence led policing, community policing, hot spot policing, best of 3 worlds, crime, safety.