Neighbourhood Watch in a Digital Age

Between Crime Control and Culture of Control

  • Vasco┬áLub

Part of the Crime Prevention and Security Management book series (CPSM)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Neighbourhood Watch in the Netherlands: Introduction and Figures

  3. To the Streets: Four Ethnographic Case Studies

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 35-35
    2. Vasco Lub
      Pages 57-72
    3. Vasco Lub
      Pages 73-98
    4. Vasco Lub
      Pages 99-121
  4. Conclusions and Discussion

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 123-123
    2. Vasco Lub
      Pages 125-138
    3. Vasco Lub
      Pages 139-144
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 145-150

About this book


Drawing on data from 340 municipalities in the Netherlands as well as ethnographic fieldwork, this book presents original research on neighbourhood watch groups to illustrate how their actions contribute to collective efficacy and lower crime levels. Technological developments like social media and smartphones have changed the landscape of coproduction in public safety, and this book addresses the resultant issues involved with creating effective policy. While digital innovations and securitization have made neighbourhood watch groups effective, they have simultaneously increased the risk of vigilantism, and Lub reveals how stigmatization, ethnic profiling and excessive social control are very real issues, especially in suburban middle-class districts. 

Crucially, this study raises questions about how the increasing popularity of community crime prevention in a digital age should be framed: as a welcome civic contribution to crime control, or as a social phenomenon adding to an undesirable culture of control. Criminologists, city officials, policy makers and anyone studying neighbourhood activism will find this a fascinating work on crime control. 


crime and community community safety technology and crime social media and crime crime prevention crime and disorder safety measures netherlands dutch ethnographic research community crime prevention policing security urban sociology

Authors and affiliations

  • Vasco┬áLub
    • 1
  1. 1.Erasmus University SociologyBureau for social argumentationRotterdamThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Law and Criminology
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-67746-0
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-67747-7
  • Buy this book on publisher's site