August 8, 2023

New Podcast Series!

We are thrilled to announce our new podcast series! Stay tuned!

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Illustration: Flávia Lozano

We recently launched a new podcast series, where we explore the first learnings we’ve made in the different cities where Edgelands has popped-up. In the first episode, hosts Benoît Perrin and Sophie Zermatten explore findings from our Diagnostic Report in Medellín. With background research and interviews of key informants, the report explores the city's security and surveillance history and current landscape, leading to the challenges to its urban social contract.

Crime and security issues in Medellín revolve largely around the activities of small neighborhood gangs, referred to as "combos." Combos have emerged as informal authorities alongside formal government structures, particularly concerning day-to-day security matters within their communities. While the state focuses on general infrastructure services, combos exert influence in local neighborhoods, often through solving community problems and providing their own brand of security. This intricate interplay gives rise to complexities in the city's social contract, which extends beyond its historical association with the Medellín Cartel but is not solely limited to that context.

While the city's homicide rates have significantly decreased, crime remains a concern that warrants further examination. Medellín's reputation for security innovation is evident through its use of advanced security technology, such as surveillance cameras and emergency line calls. Using technology to solve crime in the outskirts of the city, as well as serious crime in general, has however been less efficient, prompting concerns about the focus on technological solutions without addressing underlying social and economical causes.

Increased dialogue and engagement are vital to bridge gaps, address concerns, and collaboratively design long-term strategies that target the root causes of crime. The Edgelands Institute, renowned for facilitating such dialogues is pleased to announce the Podcast series that will guide you into our first impressions and learnings!

Click here to listen to “The Evolution of Medellín’s Security: Can Technology Make a City Safer?” on Spotify and here on YouTube!