The Living in Surveillance Societies (LiSS) COST Action is a European research programme designed to increase and deepen knowledge about living and working in the surveillance age, in order to better understand the consequences and impacts of enhanced surveillance, and subsequently to make recommendations about its future governance and practice. The underlying theme of the programme is that technologically mediated surveillance – the systematic and purposeful attention to the lives of individuals or groups utilising new ICTs – is a ubiquitous feature of modern society, with citizens routinely monitored by a range of sophisticated technologies. Yet, despite these developments relatively little is known about the depth of personal surveillance or how our personal information is used.
COST (European Cooperation in the field of Scientific and Technical Research) and supported by the EU Framework Programme. The programme is facilitating thematic collaborative research in the field of technologically mediated surveillance through a series of active working groups, workshops, seminars, annual conferences, publications, short-term scientific missions and a doctoral school for young researchers in the field. To date, this collaborative venture has attracted over 100 expert participants from 20 European countries.
The LiSS Working Groups
The scientific work of the programme is sub-divided into four Working Groups, each of which is responsible for a coherent intellectual domain and the definition of specific research questions. The Working Groups act autonomously and independently but in accordance with the general strategy of the programme. Each Working Group meets twice a year and is led by a Working Group coordinator.
» Working Group 1. Living in the Surveillance Age
Examining citizens’ everyday experiences of, and attitudes towards surveillance of both the surveilled and the surveillants.
» Working Group 2. Surveillance Technologies in Practice
Examining the development and diffusion of surveillance technologies in their institutional settings.
» Working Group 3. The Business of Surveillance
Examining the commercialisation of surveillance and in particular, customer profiling and the increasing role of the private sector in security.
» Working Group 4. Public Policy and the Regulation of Surveillance
Examining regulatory developments in surveillance, including constitutional and legal settings, privacy, freedom of information and data protection.