In November 2017, – Efus, the City of Barcelona and the Government of Catalonia organised the international “Security, Democracy and Cities” conference, whose theme was the co-production of security policies. The “Security, Democracy and Cities: Co-producing urban security policies” Manifesto was adopted at the end of the conference. Watch the film of the event here.
> The international “Security, Democracy and Cities” conference
Efus’ sixth international “Security, Democracy and Cities” conference was held in Barcelona, in November 2017. As Willy Demeyer, President of Efus, noted, the event gathered “800 participants and public and security professionals.” They came from all over the world: “We had delegations from Canada and from numerous African and Latin American countries. For us, it is important to focus on dialogue among European local authorities but also with cities from other continents,” noted Elizabeth Johnston, Efus’ Executive Director.
The intense debates held during the conference resulted in the drafting of the 2017 “Security, Democracy and Cities” Manifesto. “The Manifesto addresses 15 themes, including the prevention of violent radicalisation leading to violent extremism, security in public spaces, the security of women, and the involvement of the private sector in the production of security. The conference resulted in a manifesto that reflects and reaffirms the main values of the European Forum for Urban Security since its foundation, but also proposals that are made to public authorities”, stressed Willy Demeyer.
> The co-production of urban security policies
Efus’ founding principle is that security is a common good that must be produced with all the stakeholders of urban life and based on a good balance between prevention, sanction and social cohesion. Indeed, the co-production of urban security policies is at the heart of Efus’ activity. “Co-producing security is a very practical idea of going beyond partnership, going beyond consultation to actually co-produce a diagnosis of what we want and what we need and then implement it together”, said Elizabeth Johnston.
In attendance at the conference thanks to an exchange programme brokered by Efus, youngsters from several European cities also stressed the importance of co-production. Rafik Meftah, citizen of the town of Bagneux (FR), noted that the conference was an opportunity to network and to meet young people from other cities. Furthermore, some of the initiatives that were presented could be replicated in Bagneux: “We have very good relations with our town and our neighbourhood, and I think we can offer them to put in place similar initiatives to those carried out in other cities”, he said.
Since the conference, Efus and its members use the Manifesto as a basis for their reflections by implementing its recommendations in their practices and actions.