Book launch: The Ethics of Surveillance in Times of Emergency

This event is in the past.

The Ethics of Surveillance in Times of Emergency, edited by Kevin Macnish and Adam Henschke

Join us for the launch of this exciting, open-source, edited collection from Oxford University Press

29 April, Monday, 6  – 7:30 pm

The Pavilion (ground floor), University Building

City, University of London EC1V 0HB

How do we respond to emergencies in ways that are both consistent with democratic and community principles, and that are ethically justifiable? Emergencies place stress on existing infrastructure and communities, and put significant pressure on democratic decision-making. What have we learnt from pandemic surveillance about the challenge of acting in times of emergency? How can philosophy help us understand the ethics of public health surveillance technologies? When should we use surveillance to monitor public responses and protests to crises?

We will hear from the editors, authors, and selected discussants.

About the Editors:

  • Kevin Macnish is Digital Ethics Consulting Senior Manager with Sopra Steria. He is a former analyst and manager at GCHQ and the US DOD, and an assistant professor at the universities of Leeds and Twente. Kevin has published academic articles, chapters, and books on ethics and technology. He is a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Leeds and a member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals’ Research Advisory Board
  • Adam Henschke is an Assistant Professor with the Philosophy Section at the University of Twente. He works primarily in the ethics of technology, with much of his work focusing on security. He has written on the ethnics of surveillance, the internet of things, human military enhancement, and counter-terrorism. Recent publications include the co-edited books Counter-Terrorism, Ethics and Technology: Emerging Challenges at the Frontiers of Counter-Terrorism (2021) and The Palgrave Handbook of National Security (2021)

Register for the event

This book launch is sponsored by the Violence and Society Centre at City, University of London

Illustration at top of page is from licensed Adobe Stock library

A health perspective to the war in Israel and Palestine

Gene Feder, VISION Director and Professor of Primary Care at the University of Bristol, has written an opinion piece with colleagues commenting on events in Israel and Gaza from a public health and primary care perspective. Responding to the war in Israel and Palestine was published in December in the online edition of the British Journal of General Practice.

Gene and his colleagues are GPs working to further the development of family medicine in the occupied Palestinian territory, specifically in the West Bank, but with links to family medicine in Gaza through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency and through Medical Aid for Palestinians. They also have friends and family in Israel and Palestine.

They have three responses to the current crisis as informed by their work as GPs and connection to Palestinian primary care:

  1. A plea for the protection of health care and health professionals amid the war
  2. A plea for the preservation of public health amid war
  3. A recognition that in the aftermath of October 7th and the invasion of Gaza, the widespread direct and vicarious trauma in Israeli and Palestinian populations will result in permanent physical and emotional damage: the former in the shape of orthopaedic, neurological, and gynaecological (as a result of rape) harm, the latter in the form of widespread anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder which will also cascade down the generations.

Given VISION’s commitment to developing evidence on violence prevention, we will be organising roundtable meetings bringing together researchers focusing on post-conflict violence reduction. This is an opportunity for dialogue, perhaps leading to new perspectives and research including systematic assessment of sustainable post-conflict interventions as well as further joint activities.

For further information on the opinion piece, please see: Responding to the war in Israel and Palestine

Photograph by Emad El Byed on Unsplash

Webinar: Ontological Security Theory & Migration Studies

Dr Alexandria Innes

This event is in the past.

VISION researcher and City, University of London International Politics Senior Lecturer, Dr Alexandria Innes, will be speaking with Professor Catarina Kinnvall (Lund University) and Dr Marcus Nicolson (EURAC Research) on 23 January 2024 at 1 pm CET about ontological security.

Ontological security refers to a person’s sense of existential safety in the world. The theory was originally used by the psychiatrist R.D. Laing to explain how his patients’ experienced reality in a way that did not conform with normative experiences. Later, the theory was revisited by sociologist Anthony Giddens (1991), who emphasised the role of routines, societal trust, and biographical narratives in providing individuals with a sense of security.

The webinar explores the use of Ontological Security Theory in migration studies and political science. Prof Kinnvall will draw on her expertise in the study of minority groups to show how a strong conceptualisation of home is key for individuals to develop feelings of ontological security and highlight the role that state-level narratives play in these processes. Dr Innes will provide insights from her research on the life histories of individual migrants to argue that a strong biographical narrative and sense of trust in their surroundings are necessary to perform security.

This webinar is part of the EURAC Research online series “Diversity Matters”. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, the webinar series explores the impact of migrations, diversities and mobilities on increasingly superdiverse territorial realities. The series is a forum for experts to share their work and expertise with an audience of fellow academics, students, decision-makers and practitioners.

To register and for further information please see: Ontological Security Theory & Migration Studies webinar

For any questions or comments, please contact Andri at