The third foresight seminar run by LSE Cities in partnership with the Institute for Public Knowledge (IPK) at NYU entitled “Innovations for Urban Security and Policing” took place in New York on the 10th of November 2015. The seminar engaged the participants in a general debate about the policies that led to a drop in crime in NYC and whether cities can continue to rely on data-driven policing to improve urban security. The audience, which included policy makers, urban practitioners, technologists, activists and academic experts, explored the ways in which technology and innovation in this sector may assist cities in the future in facing unaddressed, unresolved and emerging challenges. Welcome notes were given by Eric Klinenberg, the Director of IPK, as well as Alaina Harkness, Program Officer at the MacArthur Foundation which is the main funder of the New Urban Governance project at LSE Cities.
The event included two sessions. The first session, on contemporary approaches to the way police departments and prosecutors operate was chaired by Michael McQuarrie and had presentations by Peter Moskos, Associate Professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and Mariko Hirose, Senior Staff Attorney at New York Civil Liberties Union, followed by a discussion from the audience. The second session, chaired by Gordon Douglas on the path ahead for innovators, was delivered by Alex Chohlas-Wood, Analytics Director at NYPD’s Office of Management and Planning, Adam Greenfield, Author of “Against the Smart City” and former Senior Urban Fellow at LSE Cities, as well as Patrick Sharkey, Associate Professor of Sociology at New York University, followed by another round of discussions.