Law enforcement agencies around
the globe will be watching a study by Susan Brinkley, department chair and
associate professor of criminology. Brinkley has landed funding from two major
national entities to examine the practical and ethical issues inherent in the
burgeoning field of crowd surveillance. The ethical issues alone are daunting,
but Brinkley may have results by spring 2003.
The 18-month study, which Brinkley is conducting with Professor Robert Bickel
of the Stetson University College of Law, is the first of its kind. It is being
funded by the Security Industry Association, and the International Association
of Chiefs of Police is providing access to law enforcement agencies.
The study is being conducted in phases. The first phase involves visiting
jurisdictions using CCTV (closed-circuit television) and compiling an analysis
of each system in terms of its purpose, specific type of technology (face scan
or eye scan, for example), data collection methods and training. The final
phase one objective is construction of a survey instrument for distribution to
The study’s second phase will consist of finalizing and mailing the survey,
measuring crime displacement, and finally, collecting and analyzing the
The third and final phase will involve collection of data from one year on
effectiveness, crime displacement and training, development of guidelines for
consistent data collection and storage, and making suggestions for guidelines on
responsible use of CCTV as a surveillance tool.
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