Passionate people engaging in protest demonstrations might end up in confrontations with the police. As a means to decrease conflicts between police and protesters, dialogue policing was introduced as an element in the new crowd management tactic for the Swedish police that was implemented in the final years of the last decade. Dialogue policing can be described by its five elements: negotiation (facilitate compromises and agreements between police commanders and demonstrators), mediation (explain the police point of view to groups of demonstrators and demonstrators’ views to the police), suggesting (come up with possible solutions to avoid conflict and confrontation), communication (exchange information between demonstrators and commanders), and monitoring (read moods and preparedness for action among demonstrators and how that is affected by police activities). Ultimately, the goal is to facilitate freedom of speech and the right to demonstrate. Its fulfilment will contribute to another important objective — to decrease confrontation between crowds and police and between opposing groups of demonstrators.
Johannes Knutsson received his Ph.D. in criminology at the University of Stockholm. He is Professor of Police Research at the Norwegian Police University College, Norway and has been employed at the Swedish National Police Academy and the Swedish National Police Board in a part-time position. He is also an associate of Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science, University College London. He is a judge for the Herman Goldstein Award on best problem-oriented policing projects. He has published several evaluation studies of crime preventive measures as well as studies on policing. Selected publications: Problem Oriented Policing: From Innovation to Mainstream (ed., 2003); Politiets bruk av skytevåpen i Norden (Police use of firearms in the Nordic countries, ed., 2005); Putting Theory to Work: Implementing situational prevention and problem-oriented policing (ed. with R.V. Clarke, 2006); Evaluating Crime Prevention Initiatives (ed. with N. Tilley, 2009); Police Use of Force: A Global Perspective (ed. with J.B. Kuhns, 2010); Preventing Crowd Violence (ed. with T. Madensen, 2011).