'Rotterdam is at the forefront of digital surveillance,' says Marc Schuilenburg in the sun-drenched garden of his home in De Esch, sipping a mug of filter coffee. 'The idea of a smart city, in which algorithms and data-driven surveillance play an important role, resonates here - just look at the surcharge affair that claimed many victims in Rotterdam'.
On Friday 23 June, Schuilenburg, criminologist and philosopher, will be inaugurated at Erasmus University Rotterdam as the first professor of Digital Surveillance. The title of his oration, Why we need to talk to each other about big data and algorithms when it comes to security, betrays the seriousness with which he has set up his chair. 'Many criminologists and scientists prefer to deal with the technical side of things rather than talk about the relationships of surveillance with power structures and concrete experiences of individuals,' he says. (Machine translated)