Justice Initiatives: Ethnic Profiling by Police in Europe

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June 2005

Ethnic profiling, the inappropriate use by law enforcement of ethnic characteristics in identifying criminal suspects, is widespread but under-researched in Europe. Ample evidence of the practice exists, from the wholesale targeting of Roma neighborhoods in Central Europe to the counter-productive reliance on profiling to fight terrorism in Northern Ireland and, more recently, in France, Germany, Sweden, and elsewhere.

This issue of Justice Initiatives, a publication of the Open Society Justice Initiative, examines ethnic profiling by police in Europe, and explores the methods used in the United States and the United Kingdom to confront it. Contents include the following articles:

Ethnic Profiling by Police in Europe

  • Evidence of Ethnic Profiling in Selected European Countries, Misti Duvall
  • ID Checks and Police Raids: Ethnic Profiling in Central Europe,
    Iulius Rostas
  • A Failure to Regulate: Data Protection in the Police Sector in Europe, Benjamin Hayes
  • The Case for Monitoring Ethnic Profiling in Europe,
    Stephen Humphreys

Monitoring and Measuring Ethnic Profiling

  • Measuring and Understanding Minority Experiences of Stop and Search in the UK, Joel Miller
  • Benchmarking and Analysis for Ethnic Profiling Studies, John Lamberth

Policing Practice: Case Studies

  • Confronting Ethnic Profiling in the United States, David Harris
  • Voluntary Monitoring of Law Enforcement in Michigan, Interview with Harry Dolan
  • Stop and Search: the Leicestershire Experience, Richard Keenan
  • Ethnic Profiling, Policing, and Suspect Communities: Lessons from Northern Ireland, Mary O'Rawe

The complete publication is available to download.


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