KIRAS Security Research

2014

EBeCa

Evaluation and monitoring of the launch of Body Worn Cameras. Response analysis, societal perception and recommendations for accompanying measures regarding the launch for police use in Austria.

Body Worn Cameras (BWC), also known as body cams or body worn video systems, are tested in police use in the UK and in Germany since 2005. Trials of these systems that record official acts of police officers are also planned in Austria due to the demand for ever greater transparency and better documentation of actions since the riots in Vienna in the spring of 2014. Apart from the legal perspective, which is currently being addressed by the current legislative initiative of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, the use of this assistive documentation technology require thorough counselling and research on social/ethical considerations, communication aspects as well as expectations, fears and acceptance screening of all involved groups (population, the law enforcement officers and their superiors).

If not properly addressed, these issues, expectations and fears of the police users and the population, represent a high risk that the internationally evident positive effects of BWCs are overlain by negative representations. Lack of information and of responsiveness to the concerns and expectations may result in a negative attitude towards the new technology and thus question of acceptance the test and regular use of BWCs.

Main objective and purpose of the project is the proactive monitoring and support of the experimental use of BWCs in specific Austrian context, as well as generating expertise and concrete recommendations for a future requirements-optimized implementation of the technology. Under the condition of the clearance of the legal perspective prepared by experts of the Federal Ministry of the Interior via the current legislative initiative regarding the SPG (Sicherheitspolizeigesetz), various steps of evaluation and analysis as well as practical approaches towards communication, participation and intervention recommendations are to be delivered.

After the preliminary preparation and analysis of the data available on the international state of the art regarding body cams, the study is carried out in two survey cycles. In approx. three test areas and comparable control areas without BWCs surveys among participating law enforcement officers, their managers and the population will be performed. The perspective of public relations is included by integrating and building on existing measures to inform the population. The survey will stress out qualitative differences of test and control regions regarding the perception, expectations, fears and concerns regarding all involved groups.

Results are cumulated and specially designed for the use and presentation in the police force in Austria and tailored in concrete recommendations and communications checklists. The study is supplemented with possible application prospects of Body Worn Cameras in other departments of the MoI levied by a brainstorming process with senior leadership and innovation leaders. Further issues and potentials are collected and prepared for future investigations.

Projektleiterin / Name und Institut/Unternehmen

MMag. Dr. Karin Rainer

AEI Agency for European Integration and Economic Development

Auflistung der weiteren Projekt- bzw. KooperationspartnerInnen

Ministry of the Interior

Kontakt

MMag. Dr. Karin Rainer

Project manager

AEI Agency for European Integration and Economic Development

Bräunerstraße 11A

Tel.: +43 (1) 9054621 12

Mobile: +43 (664) 88 36 0664

Skype: karin_a_rainer

E-Mail: karin.rainer@aei.at

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