Secretary General of the Ministry of the Interior, Government of Catalonia (Spain)
Oriol Amoros, General Secretary of the Department of the Interior of the Government of Catalonia, is trained as an agricultural technical engineer. He’s had a long and varied career, having been head of section in Gardening, secondary education teacher, Associate Professor of Social and Political Structure at the University of Barcelona, and Attaché to the President of the Barcelona Zoo. He then became a Member of the Parliament of Catalonia and specialised in social affairs, migration, equality and security. As such, he held several positions in the Government of Catalonia: Secretary for Immigration; Secretary for Equality, Migration and Citizenship, and Secretary General of the Department of Labour, Social Affairs and Families, prior to his current position in the Department of the Interior.
Do you have any specific hopes or predictions for the future of urban security? (What will urban security look like in 30 years? What will be the main opportunities and risks?)
Urban life and thus urban security is in constant, and nowadays speedy, evolution, which makes it very hard to state specific hopes or predictions for the future. However, there is a growing trend whereby security issues are somehow directly or indirectly linked to social affairs. In order to more effectively reduce crime, public policies will have to adopt a social approach that will include actions to improve life, education and culture for as many citizens as possible.
For the long-term future of urban security, within three decades or so, I think that community policing will have have an increasingly important role in urban security. Furthermore, crime prevention through urban planning and design will become central to avoid opportunistic offences. These two fields of security will complement each other to more comprehensively improve urban security, conforming a space where besides crime, feelings of insecurity will also play an important role for security policy making.
Sometimes, the same thing can be both an opportunity and a risk. For instance, artificial intelligence has many good uses; it can help preventing crime, in particular online, but it can also be used for crime and must therefore be adequately regulated.
Why do you think it is so important to involve citizens in urban security practice?
Involving citizens in urban security practice by fostering positive interactions between police and citizens, in particular through community policing, helps to create a de facto partnership, which is better in order to solve security issues. The involvement of citizens in urban security practice helps to build trust between the community and law enforcement agencies. A good relationship between the police and the community may help to facilitate more effective responses to community security challenges.