The world has become a global village. With every day’s witnessing of new inventions, working has become very easy and fast. This new development is touching every aspect of life. This starts from communication, economy, politics, religion, sports and even crime. It is as a result of this phenomenon that the term globalization came up. The world, as they say, was turned into a global village. But with the rapid changes taking place in all the mentioned spheres of life due to globalization comes new and more sophisticated challenges. This calls for re conceptualization of the approaches that were formally applied in the solving of certain social, economic and political problems to embrace the new changes. As a result, this paper will highlight the importance of restructuring of policies in the European police forces to embrace new techniques among them intercultural human resource management and the effects associated with this strategy to the existing principles, roles and skills within the security systems of Europe.
Evidently, each country in Europe is faced by its own form of challenges within the police force. This translates to different needs in terms of training and approach to solving these problems. With the economy becoming complicated each passing day, more and more people are engaging in scrupulous activities so as to earn a living. This coupled up with the ever improving technology, the criminal organizations are taking new turns and posing an ever increasing threat in terms of complications in their operations. Among their new strategy are their changes from operating within a single country to becoming international. This means that criminal activities have become cross border problems that need to be addressed by the countries from which the gangs operate.
Unfortunately, the European police forces are not responding to this new challenge to come up with appropriate measures that will counter them. According to Koch (1996), most of the police departments in individual countries are struggling single handedly to counter the international crimes. They do this through increasing the number of police force, calling for the legislature to enact stricter laws and giving more powers to the police. Koch purports that this strategy which is very common in Europe is not the best. Increasing the quality of the same strategy will not counter the criminal organizations that are embracing new techniques and technologies and forming new intercultural networks in their day to day activities.
This point highlights the first of Koch’s effect on traditional management principles, roles and skills in combating crime within Europe. Koch proposes the use of cooperation between the different police forces of the different countries within Europe. Through this cooperation, the countries will be in position to expand their limits to cover the expanded limits of crimes that have been increased to international levels. Unlike the traditional approach of increasing police personnel and powers, Koch proposes increase in cooperation.
In his new proposal, Koch underscores the importance of culture in the general strategies of combating crime. Although all police forces within European countries might have certain similarities due to the similarities present in the criminal environments, the governmental legislations and other aspects of culture lead to differences within the cultural perspectives of these police forces (Koch, 1996). This argument marks the second effect of his proposal on the traditional position of the European police principles, skills and roles. While traditional principles withheld tenets like police working within their own cultural perspectives, Koch proposes the importance of understanding the different cultural perceptions to come up with a more appropriate means of dealing with crime. Due to the differences in the legislative dictates of the different countries, Koch does not call for a merger to come up with a uniform culture for the police forces within the different countries, rather, he calls for drawing from the rich diversity of cultures so as to forge competence through intercultural interlinking.
In his proposition, Koch (1996) identifies joint police training as one of the new ways to assist the different security forces to come up with a safe Europe. In this proposition, the security officers are bound to do change their traditional roles of operating within their national legal framework of cooperation to an actual cooperation which includes other instruments that enhance efficiency. This includes an analysis of the similarities and divergent ideas within the cultures then identifying the strengths and weaknesses of each culture. Then, a joint training is facilitated to improve on the existing capacities through apprehension, development and coordination of the divergent capacities so as to come up with a clear more specific strategy that strengthens the efficiency of cooperation within the region. Among the skills to be included in the training are training for language and communication competence. In addition, a joint training will lead to interpersonal relationships that will lead to a commonly accepted mode of conduct in terms of law application which will lead to a common culture within the region. This will come up as a result of understanding each others’ cultures during the joint training.
Currently, there are existing joint policing within the European Union. These include Schengen and Europol. These ones, though, are only available for the EU members only. This makes the cooperation limited and does not include some countries from central and Eastern Europe (Europol, 2009). According to Koch, these two forms of cooperation are too formal and centralized. This leads to inefficiency. He proposes smaller work groups, task forces and investigation groups that will be of less formal association. Koch argues that with such small groups, there will be less problems of loss of sovereignty within the member countries and also there will be interpersonal relationships by the security forces from different countries with different cultural backgrounds and thus they will learn from one another. With an intercultural training, these small groups can exhibit more efficiency as compared to the big formal co operations like the Schengen and Europol. In addition, they will be operated in an open and decentralized format which will increase their efficiency. This means that the small organizations offer more flexibility in handling and management.
In conclusion, Koch offers the current structures of police forces with a proposal to form cross-border cooperation which will lead to developing, managing and coordinating the different cultural capacities within the different security forces so as to come up with better ways of dealing with the ever changing tactics of the current crimes. By making use of the different cultures through interpersonal relationships between security officers, it will be easier to deal with the criminals that are operating within a well coordinated diverse cultural environment within their cartels. This will also help in dealing with crimes within regions that experience an influx of immigrants. This will only be realized within the formation of small working groups and task forces which are easier to handle and which offer closer interpersonal relationships. Secondly, the stakeholders must make use of joint training which will be a strong tool in the effort to help each distinct security force understand and appreciate the cultures of others from other regions.
- Europol. “Establishment and Tasks.” Web.
- Koch, Ulrich. “Intercultural Human Resource Management for Police Cooperation in Europe.” College of Police and Security Studies, Slovenia. Web.