Understanding Trust in Police and Legitimacy in Central Eastern Europe
The Law Student Survey
Based on past studies and cognitions about legitimacy and with it related concepts the paper presents the law students’ perceptions of police authority and trust in policing in the eight countries of Central and Eastern Europe (Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, FYROM, Romania, Poland and Russia) analysing the data from a web-survey conducted in autumn 2012 and spring 2013. The findings imply that the law students in general question their willingness to comply with laws and cooperate with the police. Regression analysis shows that police authority and procedural justice are related to trust in the police in all countries and police effectiveness in Slovenia, Russia, Romania, Poland, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Croatia. Authors conclude that the police should primarily strive to improve their effectiveness, authority and procedural justice to improve trust and legitimacy of policing in the respected countries.
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