Save the date: 2012 Conference

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Read our post-conference article  and the Aubervilliers and Saint-Denis Manifesto by clicking this link.


Since its creation, 25 years ago, the Forum has organised every six years  an international conference, allowing to build a common doctrine formalised in our Manifestos. Throughout the years, these manifestos have become a reference and circulate around the world, including in the United Nations. These Manifestos represent a synthesis of Efus and Efus’members current work in order to define common policies in the field of prevention.

The European Forum organised previous conferences in Montreal, Paris, Naples and Saragossa, which each gathered some 1,000 people -elected officials, local authorities, magistrates, security professionals, voluntary workers, social workers, researchers, and civil society actors.

The 2012 conference will be hosted by the cities of Aubervilliers and Saint-Denis (located in the Seine-Saint-Denis department near Paris), who presented a common candidacy. (See their video below). The conference is entitled “The future of prevention” and is organised around four major themes: risks, technologies and prevention; governance and citizenship; cities and sustainable development; a Europe open to the world.

Risks, technologies and prevention: development policies entail a greater risk to collective and individual safety. These dangers can be seen as inevitable risks that have to be reduced as much as possible thanks to technology. But are all risks equal? Are social risks the same as technological or urban risks? Will prevention, which is a long-term and uncertain process, be replaced by mere risk management? Will social insecurity be left aside, in favour of a more technological management of its consequences?

Governance and citizenship: the complexity of insecurity, the management of its reality and the feeling of insecurity lead to a governance associating public and private partners. Efficiency needs to be based on analyses and responses that deal with real problems encountered on the field. What goes on in our streets, our cities, our neighbourhood, is linked to the globalisation of criminal phenomena. Many voices call for an involvement of citizens in the definition and implementation of actions, but this is easier said than done.

Cities and sustainable development: the city is the backbone of our prevention and safety policies. The multiplicity of factors creating insecurity demands global answers in the various fields of public policies contributing to sustainable development. Social, cultural and architectural policies are the basis of local development plans. Crime prevention must combine short term action and long term vision.

A Europe open to the world: analyses of the threats posed to the safety of European citizens are generally unbalanced because most give more importance to certain threats over others. Terrorism, organised crime, trafficking in human beings are linked to human migrations. In general, responses to these phenomena are narrow and pose a threat to freedoms: the freedom of movement, of work and of trade. Will Europe focus on security at its frontiers without taking into account prevention on its own territory and in neighbouring countries, which need to be based on an overall development policy?

The conference “The future of prevention” will include plenary sessions on each of these four key themes, but also a wide array of workshops on the following themes: urban risks, evaluation of prevention, city and organised crime, “why does it work?”, large events, the school of citizenship, rules for living together, the city at night, prevention messages and internet, Mum, Dad, the Mayor and me, sex and violence, sports and prevention, mediation, prevention police, prevention and culture, addictions and drugs, public spaces and safety, collective violence.

In addition to the plenary sessions and the workshops, there will be other types of activities. Thus, the “research-action” sessions will allow researchers to present a theme in ten minutes, followed by Q&A sessions with the public. The “zoom sessions” will allow cities, associations, NGOs and professional organisations to present an initiative of their choice, which can be for instance a specific project, a practice or an association.

The “skills and training” activities will include various workshops aimed at comparing the competencies and status of the different prevention stakeholders such as coordinators, police officers, social workers, mediators and elected officials. These activities will also focus on the European Executive Master in Urban Security (EEMUS), and the various learning programmes available at universities and professional training centres, or aimed at local authorities staff.

Lastly, there will be exhibition spaces with stands available for rent.

The conference will also host live performances. We hope that cultural performances will be a significant part of the 2012 conference and we wish many cities will take part in them. We are particularly keen to showcase the work of young people.

The programme of the conference will be debated throughout the Efus all along the year 2012. Early in 2012, we will open workshops on all the themes of the conference. Each workshop can be focused on preparing a theme chosen by its participants, and all the workshops will contribute to the final Manifesto.

We will give regular information about the 2012 conference on our website.