Date of Conferral
Public Policy and Administration
Donald R. McLellan
After the United Nations' mission in Liberia (UNMIL) ends on September 30, 2015, effective policing will be a security concern for Liberians. Liberians have expressed fear that conflict could return if ongoing police training programs do not sustain public safety. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to understand how UNMIL's training affected public confidence in the Liberia National Police (LNP). The theoretical bases for this study included public choice theory and liberal democratic theory. Quantitative data were used to address impact of UNMIL's police training on the maintenance of law and order. These data were collected through a researcher-developed survey which measured recruitment, training, effectiveness (insert comma here) and public confidence in the LNP. Participants were government officials, members of UNMIL, LNP, and civic organizations (n = 120). Data were analyzed using ANOVA. Qualitative semistructured interview data were also gathered from 18 additional participants to address the challenges for quality improvement in the police security forces. The results were inductively coded and organized across themes and patterns. Quantitative findings indicated a moderately significant correlation between police perceived knowledge and job effectiveness (r = -0.35). However, qualitative findings show the government of Liberia failed to provide adequate resource support to complement the training due to its weak commitment. Diversity of trainers from contrasting policing jurisdictions produced an outcome that lacked a country-specific context for Liberia. This study promotes positive social change by informing future police training interventions by the United Nations on a host county's policing needs.