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Tijdschrift Tijdschrift voor Veiligheid x Jaar 2019 x
Artikel

Veiligheid uit de glazen bol?

Naar verantwoorde toepassingen van big data in het veiligheidscomplex

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift voor Veiligheid, Aflevering 3-4 2019
Trefwoorden Big data, Security, good governance
Auteurs Remco Spithoven en Siri Beerends
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The promises of Big Data, predictive policing and artificial intelligence hold a key position in the public debate for quite some time now. Optimists tell that it is possible to predict where criminal events will occur before they take place. This would implicate a major shift towards a crime and insecurity preventive society, feeding on our cultural longing for a secure future. Therefore we give algorithms and deep learning access to more and more aspects of our lives. But how realistic and desirable is the application of Big Data techniques in the area of security?
    In this article we put focus on the research question ‘In which way can Big Data and predictive policing support good governance of security?’, that has led our study. By exploring the central concepts, the processes behind them and their results in the domain of public security, we conclude that there are only rather disappointing results from the application of these techniques: crime and insecurity have not dropped when the police and other organizations turned to Big Data techniques. Instead, many negative side effects occurred. We search for explanations in six central academic critiques on the application of these techniques in the area of security.
    We have found several ways to guaranty principles of good governance in the application of Big Data techniques, but these require a firm paradigm shift on Big Data in general. The heuristics of security professionals should not be overshadowed by technological promises: the professional should always be in the loop, must understand the way predictions come into existence and must be able to correct flaws and bugs of (semi-)automated decisions. We conclude that safeguarding public security must remain human work in which Big Data techniques can assist.


Remco Spithoven
Remco Spithoven is lector Maatschappelijke Veiligheid aan de Hogeschool Saxion en redacteur van dit tijdschrift.

Siri Beerends
Siri Beerends is cultureel socioloog, onderzoeker en schrijver bij SETUP en pro‍movenda aan de Universiteit Twente.
Artikel

Eerder verbindend dan visionair

Een analyse van de overwegingen van burgemeesters bij het gebruiken van de handhavende bevoegdheden uit de Wet Damocles

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift voor Veiligheid, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden home closure, Mayors, political leadership, leadership style, the Netherlands
Auteurs Ineke Bastiaans en Niels Karsten
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Several authors fear that the expansion of Dutch mayors’ executive powers in the field of safety and security will harm their position as non-partisan and consensus-oriented leaders. Empirical research into how mayors use their powers, however, is still rare. From a leadership perspective, the current article analyzes how mayors in the region of South East Brabant in Netherlands use their administrative power to close homes involved in drug-related crime. Drawing on Fischer’s framework of discursive practices, we analyze mayors’ considerations in terms of the argumentation they provide for closing homes. Our analysis, which draws on interviews and document analysis, covers 27 cases from the police region of South-East Brabant and includes 120 considerations. Our findings indicate that mayors vindicate home closures mostly through policy-derived technical and situational argumentations. Vindications that aspire a particular societal effect, such as the reduction of criminal activity, or ideological motivations are rarer, which is indicative of a non-decisive leadership style. In addition, mayors mostly respect the local closure policies. As such, they show very little decisive and individualistic leadership. And, to the extent that they deviate from agreed-upon regional policies, their motivation is to be able to take into account unique local circumstances. In the use of their administrative powers mayors, thus, show mostly situational and adaptive leadership, which, rather than as visionaries, positions them as caretakers. The leadership style of Dutch mayor in the use of this administrative power is, thus, much more in accordance with their traditional bridging-and-bonding leadership style than some authors suspect. Some of the limitations of our study are that we have analyzed closure decisions from one region only and that real-life decisions are susceptible to contextual influences. At the same time, our study provides a rare insight into real-world mayoral leadership in the Netherlands in the field of safety and security.


Ineke Bastiaans
Ineke Bastiaans is onderzoeker en adviseur bij Necker van Naem.

Niels Karsten
Niels Karsten is Universitair Docent aan Tilburg University.
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