Gendering transnational policing: experiences of Australian women in international policing operations
This article explores the issues encountered by Australian women police officers on international peace keeping and capacity-building deployments in Timor-Leste, the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea. The discussion draws upon the literature on transnational policing as well as on women's participation in domestic police forces. The women police interviewed for this research encountered challenges working with colleagues from both the host nation and other contributing forces. The most commonly reported difficulties, however, stemmed from the behaviour of some of their Australian colleagues. These experiences point to the risk that a small number of male Australian police are reverting to a macho culture on international missions. The symbolic as well as practical implications of any kind of ‘gender reversion’ are likely to be significant.