‘Question Time’ event on surveillance to be hosted by Stirling academic

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The future of surveillance cameras in the UK will be debated in a Question Time-style event hosted by a University of Stirling academic.

Professor William Webster, a Director of the Centre for Research into Information Surveillance and Privacy (CRISP), which is dedicated to understanding the social impacts and consequences of surveillance practices, has organised the event in Central London.

Professor William Webster

Professor William Webster will lead the debate.

Professor Webster said: “Surveillance cameras are a key feature of modern society, they are used for a variety of policing and law and order purposes, and are symbolic of the surveillance society within which we live.

“This event offers a unique opportunity for the general public to ask questions about the use of surveillance cameras in society, we have assembled an esteemed panel of experts and are expecting a full and frank debate on a range of issues.”

The event will follow the format of the BBC’s long-running Question Time programme and will give members of the public an opportunity to ask questions and debate issues associated with surveillance cameras.

The panel will consist of: Tony Porter, Surveillance Camera Commissioner; Lord Brian Paddick, Lords Spokesperson for Home Affairs; Silkie Carlo, Director of Big Brother Watch; Simon Israel, Channel 4 News’ Senior Home Affairs Correspondent; and Mike Barton, Chief Constable of Durham Constabulary and national police lead on CCTV.

Among the issues likely to be debated are: the proliferation of surveillance cameras in the UK, their purpose and function, their effectiveness and consequences, and contemporary developments in technology, such as facial recognition technology, drones and body-worn cameras.

The event will be held at the London School of Economics on 21st February between 6pm and 8pm.

Entry is free but audience members must register a place via Eventbrite or via CRISP@stir.ac.uk.

Further details can be found on the CRISP website.

Background information

Media enquiries to Rosemary Free, Communications Officer, on 01786 466 169 or rosemary.free@stir.ac.uk