837
34
Measuring Success
Randall I. Atlas and Gregory Saville
There are two tactics for measuring success in crime prevention—the academic and the practical.
The rst is geared to the researcher who studies which crime prevention through environmental
design (CPTED) strategies work on what kind of problems and then suggests how those strategies
might prevent crime. It is generally what criminological researchers have done for decades. There
are a number of bibliographic reviews of CPTED effectiveness (Cozens et al., 2005).
The other tactic is geared to the practitioner and designer. They conduct research to collect base-
line information before suggesting CPTED strategies. That baseline information, also known as a
CPTED Risk Assessment, helps the practitioner conduct a thorough analysis and indicates which
CPTED strategies will work best. After implementation, the CPTED practitioner can then measure
the success and, if necessary, ne-tune responses. Unfortunately, that is not generally what practi-
tioners do. It is what we advocate in this chapter; in fact, we are certain it must happen if CPTED is
to move forward as a science and not just an art form.
Security and CPTED are geared to prevent a possible future outcome. How do you measure what
has not yet happened? Stock investments are measured on their rate of return. Doctors measure suc-
cess on the time of recovery for a patient from treatment or surgery. Architects are measured and
praised on their success if their buildings are being built on time and budget and also if they dont
leak or fall down.
Fire departments have a peculiar position of being measured not only how quickly they respond
to a re and how many res they put out but more importantly on how many res they prevent. The
absence of res in buildings is an accepted indicator that the re department and design/construc-
tion professionals are doing a good job. Many workplaces have signs on the employee board show-
ing the number of accident-free days. Why is it acceptable for re departments to consider success
the lack of re incidents and loss of life but security and police departments struggle in getting the
same recognition and funding for doing the same? Are we more interested in preventing a stairwell
re than preventing an assault in a parking garage?
Evaluating CPTED is not like evaluating re prevention. The cause of re is straightforward—
combustible material, oxygen, and so forth. The cause of crime is not so clear—poverty, drug abuse,
mental illness, alcoholism, and alienation, are only a few. Even the believers in routine activity
theory, which says crime cannot occur without a suitable target, time/place and motivated offender,
CONTENTS
Practical Methods for Measurement .............................................................................................. 839
Measurement Paradox .................................................................................................................... 840
Building Codes............................................................................................................................... 841
How to Move CPTED into the Twenty-First Century ................................................................... 841
Where Do You Start? ...................................................................................................................... 842
Category 1 and 2 Methods ........................................................................................................842
Categories 3 and 4 ..................................................................................................................... 843
Categories 5 and 6 .....................................................................................................................844
Summary ........................................................................................................................................ 847
References ......................................................................................................................................847

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