My old Ideas colleague Max Allen and I would sometimes talk about how much the reputation of a broadcast could depend on its timing. Some programmes, we thought, were sent into the world ahead of their time, others came after their hour had struck, and every now and then there was one was lucky enough to arrive right on time. This series, it seemed to me, arrived on the scene a little before the moment at which it might have received the hearing I would have wished for it. It was made in 2003, and broadcast in early 2004, and seemed to get a little lost in the long shadow of 9/11. A few years later, a critical investigation of topics like policing, national security, risk consciousness and surveillance might have been more welcome.
The occasion of the series was a massive conference. called "In Search of Security," which was organized by the Law Society of Canada and held in Montreal in the winter of 2003. The Law Society is now defunct, discontinued by the government of Stephen Harper, but, at that time, it was doing research and trying to stimulate public discussion on the expansion of the private security industry, both in Canada and world-wide. The Montreal conference addressed this subject extensively, but also went beyond it, as the broad title "In Search of Security" suggests. I built on the conference to create this series. The majority of the interviews were with people I encountered there, but I also added a few voices that were not part of the conversation in Montreal and took up some subjects that were not featured as prominently there as they are in my series.
Thanks are due to Dennis Cooley, then the Law Commission's Director of Research, for involving me in the Commission's work in the first place, and then assembling the international gathering in Montreal that allowed me to create this series. I have indicated the topic of each programme, and the participants, below. A transcript is available on the Transcripts page of the site.
Part One: THE RISE OF PRIVATE SECURITY IN CANADA - Christopher Murphy, Ross McLeod, Domenic Mammoli, Kirk Briscoe, Neil Moran, Robert Buffone, Gaétan Héroux, George Rigakos, Stephen Schneider, Jacques Duschesneau, Dale Kinnear
Part Two: THE RISE OF PRIVATE SECURITY WORLD-WIDE - Vadim Volkoff, Renata Ferraz, Clifford Shearing, Deborah Avant, Christopher Spearin, Peter Singer, Doug Brooks
Part Three: THE THOUGHT OF CLIFFORD SHEARING - Clifford Shearing, Adam Crawford, Marianna Valverde
Part Four: POLICE REFORM - Benoit Dupont, Bob Lunney, David Kennedy, Eli Silverman, Marianna Valverde
Part Five: THE POWER OF THE POLICE - John Sewell, Bob Lunney, Chris Murphy, Susan Eng, Julian Falconer, Shirley Heafey, Philip Stenning
Part Six: SECURITY WITHOUT THE STATE - Vince Del Buono, Benoit Dupont, Pamela Leach, Clifford Shearing, Madeleine Jenneker, John Cartwright
Part Seven: SECURITY CONSCIOUSNESS - Christopher Murphy, Jonathan Simon, Ian Loader, Willem de Lint, Lucia Zedner, Kate Martin
Part Eight: NATIONAL SECURITY IN CANADA - Andrew Mitrovica, Matthew Behrens, Ali Hindy, Sophie Harkat, Barbara Jackman, Michel Juneau-Katsuya, Shirley Heafey, Don Stuart
Part Nine: RISK - Clifford Shearing, Pat O’Malley, Jonathan Simon, Allen Bonner, Kevin Haggerty, Richard Ericson
Part Ten: SURVEILLANCE - Mark Perry, Roch Tassé, Kate Martin, David Lyon, Katherine Lippel