Please join us in congratulating Beatriz Magaloni, professor of political science, FSI senior fellow, and faculty director of the Program on Poverty, Violence & Governance, winner of the 2021 Heinz I. Eulau Award for the best article published in American Political Science Review!
In this award-winning article entitled “Killing in the Slums: Social Order, Criminal Governance and Police Violence in Rio de Janeiro," Professor Magaloni, Edgar Franco-Vivanco, and Vanessa Melo explore the conditions that allow criminal organizations to establish local governance structures and the mechanisms that enable the police to regain territorial control and legitimacy.
The article finds that in territories reigned by criminal orders, police have to gain legitimacy in the eyes of the community and emerge as the sole embodiment of coercive force and emerge as the legitimate embodiment of physical force. But this is not always easy. For instance, when criminal rule effectively provides local security and public goods, the state will have a hard time gaining territorial control. Why? Because residents often feel safer under the authority of drug lords than with the police presence. However, where criminal orders cannot restrain their forces from fighting among themselves and victimizing residents, it is significantly easier for the government to regain territorial control and create a legitimate state order. To do so, the state has to constrain violence, monitor and sanction police officers’ abusive behaviors, and bring public justice systems to the poor. Otherwise, the state will likely fail to retake territorial control, allowing criminal orders to prevail.
To read more, check out the article here.
Congratulations, Professor Magaloni, on this high honor!