Postcards from Scotland are published by the Centre for Confidence and Well-being, a registered charity based in Scotland. Registered No. SCO37080

Book 9 | Conviction

Violence, culture and a shared public service agenda


John Carnochan


The media throughout the UK have rightly been interested in the phenomenal results that Scotland's Violence Reduction Unit have had on the country's violence figures. This book gives the inside story on how they managed to get agencies working together to tackle gang violence.

However, this book is not an analysis of violence or different policies. John Carnochan takes us on a memorable journey of discovery as he comes to grip with violence in some of Glasgow’s toughest areas and tries to discover why Scotland’s murder rate is much higher than its neighbours’.

This compelling book is not about high-visibility policing or more officers. Rather it’s about understanding a culture obsessed with ‘respect’ and the importance of empathy, health visitors and children’s experience in the first few years of life.

As so much of the book's focus is on agencies working together and partnership working it contains vital lessons for anyone seeking to bring about change in the public sector.


John Carnochan was a police officer for almost 39 years working mostly as a Detective and involved in the investigation of serious crime and in particular as senior investigating officer in murder inquiries. He co-founded the Violence Reduction Unit where the fundamental tenet is that ‘violence is preventable - not inevitable’.

He was awarded the Queen’s Police Medal in 2007 for distinguished police service and in 2010 was made a Fellow by Distinction of the Royal College of Physicians’ Faculty of Public Health.

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