Democracy, Society and the Governance of Security by Jennifer Wood, Benoît Dupont

By Jennifer Wood, Benoît Dupont

The merchandising of safety is not any longer a kingdom monopoly. it's dispersed and happens throughout the practices of states, organizations, non-governmental actors and community-based organisations. yet what will we find out about the ways that 'security' is believed approximately and promoted during this pluralized box of supply? Are democratic values being complex and guarded, or threatened and compromised? wooden and Dupont collect a workforce of popular students to make clear our realizing of the preparations for modern protection governance. supplying a 'friendly discussion' among those that argue that democratic transformation rests within the improvement of sturdy country associations and people who suggest a extra de-centered schedule, the students during this quantity deliver state-of-the-art theoretical analyses to endure on empirical examples. This quantity will entice researchers within the fields of criminology, political technological know-how, sociology and defense reviews.

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Secondly, under present-day conditions, the nodal model is better suited, than are state-centric models, to help us theorize ‘optimal security’. An optimal system of security would be one in which security is neither quantitatively excessive (to the detriment of objectives other than security) nor qualitatively invasive (to the detriment of personal freedoms) and which satisfies conditions of collective accountability, effectiveness and justice (cf. Johnston 2000b: 180). One of the objectives of the optimal model would be to develop security as a collective good (Loader and Walker 2001).

As I have already suggested by citing the work of Castells so extensively, much has already been accomplished under the sign of networked governance. Recently Burris et al. (2005) have reviewed some of the theoretical possibilities and have endorsed the idea of ‘nodal governance’ as a possibility that is worth exploring. In this work they draw on earlier work that Johnston, Shearing and Wood have been pursuing, both separately and together (Shearing 2001a; Johnston and Shearing 2003; Shearing and Wood 2003a; 2003b).

In addition, multi-functional ‘services’ companies (such as Serco and Sodexho) have penetrated the criminal justice, security and prison markets in countries like the UK and Australia. Given this complexity, there is little to be gained from engaging in lengthy discussion about the precise meaning of ‘transnational commercial security’. For that reason our aim is merely to describe some of the most significant developments in a complex and rapidly changing field. Research undertaken over a decade ago (Cunningham et al.

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