Patrol Officer Responses to Citizen Feedback: An Experimental Analysis

William Wells, Julie Horney, Edward R. Maguire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Police organizations that implement community policing often seek new ways to measure officer performance. One important way to measure officer and organizational performance is through surveys of citizens. Although many police departments survey citizens, research has generally overlooked the manner in which this information is used and the effects of citizen feedback. This research describes one program that provides citizen feedback to patrol officers in hopes of increasing the quality of service that they provide. Using a randomized design, the authors test the effects of providing citizen feedback to officers on their job performance and attitudes. Results show that citizen feedback does not alter officers’ performance, attitudes toward the communities they serve, and activities that put them in close contact with those communities. The authors discuss potential explanations for finding no effects of the feedback intervention and pose directions for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-205
Number of pages35
JournalPolice Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • citizen surveys
  • community policing
  • perceptions of police
  • performance measurement and evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Law


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