Exploring Differing Experiences of a Masculinity Contest Culture in Policing and the Impact on Individual and Organizational Outcomes

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11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Despite increasing allegations of misconduct, police organizations continue to overlook the environmental factors that contribute to harassment and other forms of misconduct. Using secondary survey data collected from a Canadian police organization (N = 488), this study explored the specific factors that might contribute to masculinity contest cultures (i.e., cultures akin to a zero-sum competition with rules defined by masculine norms; MCCs). This study also examined whether MCC norms are experienced differently based on level within the organization, occupational role, and employee sex. The study findings suggest that MCC norms may be amplified by a shortage of personnel, and certain policies and practices that pit members against each other. The study also found that MCC norms are not necessarily perceived in the same way. For instance, female and frontline police officers were more likely to perceive their workplace as a MCC. Female officers were also more likely to experience harassing behaviors. This study makes a significant contribution to research and practice as it advances our understanding of MCCs within policing and how they might be changed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)298-324
Number of pages27
JournalPolice Quarterly
Volume24
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep. 2021

Keywords

  • harassment
  • masculinity
  • masculinity contest culture

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