Conjunction of Criminal Opportunity

The Conjunction of Criminal Opportunity (CCO) is a model of the immediate causes of criminal events, and of generic preventive mechanisms (principles) for blocking, weakening or diverting those causes. CCO can be used independently to give comprehensive maps of the mechanisms of causation and intervention; or within 5Is under Intelligence and Intervention respectively. CCO is an advanced, more inclusive and detailed counterpart of the Problem Analysis Triangle.

CCO can articulate interventions in some theoretical depth. A practical intervention method may act via multiple mechanisms – creating an enclosure around an industrial estate may physically block offenders, deter them, and aid preventers, who now need only guard the access point, not the entire perimeter. Additionally, CCO can:

  • Map the entire range of possible interventions and describe how individual methods work
  • Integrate theories within situational prevention, and situational with offender-oriented action
  • Articulate vague concepts/terms e.g. in CPTED (crime prevention through environmental design)
  • Guide offender interviews for preventive intelligence, and investigation of crime (‘means, motive, opportunity…’)
  • Systematically describe perpetrator techniques
  • Support futures work – crime-proofing, crime risk assessment, crime impact assessment

A summary of CCO is here. An experimental ‘serious game‘ for training practitioners in CCO, by Martin Ruskov is here and described here (Ruskov, M., Celdran, J. M., Ekblom, P., Sasse, M. A. (2012). Unlocking  the next level of crime prevention: Development of a game prototype to  teach the conjunction of criminal opportunity. Information Technologies  and Control 10 (3), 15-21.).

A counter-terrorism version, the Conjunction of Terrorist Opportunity (Roach, Ekblom and Flynn 2005), is here and a presentation is here.

A cyber-crime application of CCO is here – search ‘Ekblom’ in several places.

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