Exploring Gender Differences in the Australian Context: Organizational and Cultural Dimensions of Ethical Attitudes

  • Louse E. PorterEmail author
  • Tim Prenzler


A growing body of literature suggests that police agencies should aim to increase the number of female officers to positively influence police culture and reduce the occurrence of behavior-related problems. However, not all studies conclude that female officers are more ethical or less likely to attract public complaints than male officers. This chapter reviews the history of women in police and evidence, both from the field and from surveys, that suggests gender differences in ethical behavior. It then presents analysis of primary data on Australian officers’ ethical attitudes across eleven scenarios. These recent Australian data highlight current gender differences across key integrity constructs are somewhat less pronounced than expected. However, there are differences in the ways male and female officers view themselves in relation to the (perceived) normative culture, and differences in how organizational and cultural perceptions impact their willingness to report the infractions. The results are discussed in terms of the context of women in police and enhancing their experience in policing.


Gender Police integrity Ethics Police culture 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Griffith UniversityBrisbaneAustralia

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