Chiara Fonio (ITSTIME senior researcher) attended the Surveillance Summer Seminar hosted by the Surveillance Project at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. The seminars were led by three faculty: David Lyon (Queen’s University , Canada ), Kevin Haggerty ( University of Alberta , Canada ) and Kirstie Ball (The Open University, UK ). The issue of surveillance was explored from a wide perspective through lectures, discussions, group sessions and film screenings. About 20 graduate students (PhD and MA candidates, but also Post Doctoral Fellows) of 9 different nationalities attended the excellent lectures and actively participated in the discussions. All the students were encouraged to write a 2 page research proposal and to share theoretical, methodological and ethical issues within their group. At the end of the week, each group (DNA, facilitated by David Lyon, RFID, facilitated by Kevin Haggerty and CCTV facilitated by Kirstie Ball) presented either collective goals or individual research projects. It was a stimulating, productive and intensive week. The seminars offered her the opportunity to meet (or reconnect) with excellent scholars who gave Chiara helpful suggestions, insights and feedback. Moreover, she met young scholars she would be more than happy to work with. Different academic backgrounds, along with the willingness to learn from each other, made the seminars a really unique experience. In particular, the week was filled with social networking with graduate students. Some of them are her area of study (CCTV) and they are planning an exclusively CCTV oriented conference for next year in London. Besides the event, during the seminar they discussed methodological issues and the proliferation of video surveillance in different countries (Canada, Mexico, UK and Italy). Overall, she was pleased with all the presentations, discussions and group activities. It was a privilege to work with surveillance studies scholars and she is hopeful for future collaboration
In the last decades surveillance and security tools, from cctv to ID cards, have grown to unpredictable levels. From close spaces, such as airports and malls, to urban contexts, our identities have become mere physical features constantly monitored by the penetrating eyes of security devices. The complexity, the nuances and the essential social components of identity are often reduced to ascribed characteristics. Identities have turned into “transparent” and naked bodies, legitimately scrutinised and divided into “pieces”. This simplistic approach could lead either to social exclusion of ethnic groups usually associated with deviant behaviour, or to a more general lack of concern for the integrity and the dignity of the person as a whole. The paper aims at analysing this new and inadequate anthropology of the person by focusing on different examples, such as biometrics and data banks, that emphasise the fragmentation of the body and the risks related to this reductive approach.
DOWNLOAD LINK : Surveillance and identity
Il governo giapponese ha investito circa 8 milioni di euro per un progetto sperimentale in 20 regioni del paese. Nei prossimi anni saranno installati dei lettori Rfid (Radio Frequency Identification) sui cancelli delle scuole, ai semafori e sui lampioni dei parchi per “salvaguardare” i minori. Gli Rfid sono in grado di interagire con i tag Wi-fi portati in tasca dagli scolari: in questo modo i genitori saranno informati via sms o su un sito web degli spostamenti dei propri figli.