Putting surveillance to measure

In 2010 the Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht) made clear that state surveillance must be limited in a democratic society: Authorities have to make sure that not too much surveillance is carried out when introducing new measures. Since then, the scientific community has been faced with a difficult question: how can surveillance be estimated quantitatively? Legal scholar Prof. Dr. Ralf Poscher is, among other things, Director of the Max-Planck-Institute for the Study of Crime, Security and Law in Freiburg, where he has taken on this task. His conviction: it is possible to quantify the state’s surveillance activities, and we should do so – using tools and possibilities offered by digitization. The goal could be to develop a “surveillance barometer” that would allow us to keep an eye on surveillance in the future. In this first episode of “Digitalgespräch”, Ralf Poscher explains to Marlene Görger and Petra Gehring how this could be achieved, what benefits it would have, and what surprises the objective figures of surveillance hold.

The podcast is in German. At the moment there is no English version or transcript available.

Episode 1 of “Digitalgespräch”, feat. Ralf Poscher of the Max-Planck-Institute for the Study of Crime, Security and Law , 26 May 2021

Further information:

Link to the expert report on surveillance scenarios relevant to the “surveillance barometer” (in German):

all episodes of “Digitalgespräch”

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