University of Malta

Security Science
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IPG – Security Science Programme

The Department of Information Policy & Governance (IPG) has, since its inception, been involved in the development of security science as a new discipline. The sustained interest of the Department in security dates back to the international involvement of its founding staff in the design of privacy law in the security and law enforcement sector, including their participation in the drafting and review of the Council of Europe’s Recommendation on Data Protection and the Police between 1984-2014.

At the same time, research within the department has contributed significantly to the definition and consolidation of this scientific field. The IPG has, in recent years coordinated or worked in interdisciplinary research initiatives, activities and projects related either to the theoretical development of the disciple as to the study of security science diverse applications in daily life.

IPG conceptualises, understands and operates security science as an “interdisciplinary science that draws on many fields [disciplines] (such as computer science, information and communications technology, information policy and governance, law, psychology, criminology, sociology, social anthropology and philosophy) in developing theories, constructing a structured body of knowledge and identifying concepts and principles about risks/threats to human beings, material or intangible assets in a variety of specified contexts or situations as well as the protection to be extended to such human beings and/or assets in such situations (Cannataci 2015).

The department also add to this holistically interdisciplinary vision elements promoting the interconnection between security science, open science, technology and innovation as the Evolving Security SciencE through Networked Technologies, Information policy and Law – ESSENTIAL (link to web page) demonstrates either by stimulating the engagement and supervision of early security science researches as by building an innovative approach to the theoretical and operational elements of security sciences, as by enhancing the cooperation between the various actors engaged on the practice of security activities.

These links between various forms of threat and appropriate protection in a diverse set of circumstances led the IPG teams to take a special interest in the role of information in threat intelligence and risk reduction from both a technical as well as a human rights point of view. As the world moved into the Internet Age, IPG increased its work on the fundamental question: does security in the Knowledge Society require policy interventions by governments as well as commercial corporations? If yes, what type of intervention is required and should it include initiatives such as new operational procedures, new educational programmes as well as new technical and legal safeguards as part of legislative reform? These questions form the basis of the intricate millennia-old relationship between security and information flows. This relationship between security science and information policy & governance has been recently brought to the fore by technological developments where citizens armed with smartphones and other mobile devices are on-line, everywhere, all of the time.

The delicate balance that must be achieved and maintained as part of a sustainable European information policy inspired the Department’s continued involvement in designing and/or co-ordinating a number of collaborative research projects in the European Union’s FP7 and Horizon 2020 SEC (security) SIS and other programmes including:

I.   ESSENTIAL - Evolving Security Science through Networked Technologies, Information Policy and Law

II.  EVIDENCE - European Informatics Data Exchange Framework for Courts and Evidence

III. SMART - Scalable Measures for Automated Recognition Technologies

IV. RESPECT - Rules, Expectations & Security through Privacy-Enhanced Convenient Technologies

V.  MAPPINGManaging Alternatives for Privacy, Property and Internet Governance

VI. CITYCoPCitizen Interaction Technologies Yield Community Policing

Last Updated: 5 October 2017

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