#EdgelandsMaps: Mapping Spaces of Security and Surveillance

The modern social contract includes explicit and implicit agreements that govern our actions and interactions with the State, and also with other actors and people. As part of these agreements there is a constant negotiation in which it is sometimes necessary to sacrifice certain freedoms or rights in exchange for security in physical spaces (the city) and in digital spaces (the networks, the technologies that monitor, control and measure us).

From Edgelands we propose experiences that link citizens and interest groups to talk about the perceptions, closeness and understanding of security and surveillance in physical and virtual environments.

In the city of Medellin, together with a group of young people participating in the City Editors program of the House of Strategies, we developed workshops in order to jointly understand the concepts of security and surveillance, from our own perceptions, imaginaries and experiences.

Here we tell you a little more about the workshops:

“The dynamics that make me feel safe in my neighborhood is that at least there are no visible combos, there are no visible barriers, there are rarely robberies or robberies, there are guards, there are constantly public servants.” Julian Hoyos Jaramillo.

Experiential workshops

In the first workshop we approached the question: What are the security and surveillance agreements in which I participate?

During the experience, reflections were generated by the participants on the explicit and implicit agreements that occur in different spaces of their daily lives related to security and surveillance. As a result, a map is created in which the participants identify digital and physical places where they feel safe and unsafe.

“The cameras make me feel safe, that there are many people who watch us, take care of us, are aware of the environment, what is going to happen or what is not going to happen.”

En el segundo taller nos centramos en la pregunta: ¿Diferentes actores, una misma vigilancia?

In the second workshop we focused on the question: Different actors, the same surveillance?

“Connecting with other people from different parts of the city in editors has allowed me to have a more panoramic view of security.” Julian Hoyos Jaramillo.
“Security is a comfortable space and a sense of peace. Surveillance is being constantly on the lookout for something.”
“Things that I like too much about my neighborhood is the atmosphere that people who are arriving give you because before my neighborhood was a very lonely place, very little known, but today there are many houses, many people; that one wonders where that has been from, and it has been quiet people in which one can live and get to know.” Kevin Cardona.


Map of the virtual space

Map of the phisical space

Profile of actors identified by participants



The conversations with the young people allowed us to recognize perspectives on security and surveillance from everyday life and the social dynamics of the territory. We invite you to put the issue on the table in your community.

Here you can download the guides of the experiences so that you can put them to the test in your territory. Don't forget to share your results on our networks using #EdgelandsMaps.

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