Culture, generally, is defined as the collective beliefs, values, attitudes and knowledge of a society. Culture can manifest itself in the form of common behaviour patterns within a society. A definition of police culture is: ‘Police culture covers the values and standards that affect behaviour patterns and work practices, as they are applied by the police officers
All cultures have subdivisions (subcultures) and police services are no different. There are differences between dominant values and attitudes – the culture – of homicide detectives and traffic police, and between uniformed and non-uniformed personnel. There is also often tension between national and local police services. These differences in values can manifest themselves in different behaviour among various police subcultures.