Breaking Down Walls: New Solutions for More Effective Urban Crime Prevention in South African Cities

  • Article

Breaking Down Walls: New Solutions for More Effective Urban Crime Prevention in South African Cities – Resources

Organisation/Publisher

Durban University of Technology

Author(s)

Monique Marks, Chris Overall

Publication date

28 Jan 2015

Uploaded by:

Monique Marks

Uploaded on

19 Mar 2015

Downloads & Links resources

Description

In the late apartheid period South African suburbs began to change dramatically in both their appearance and design. Essentially, housing was designed with the aim of keeping intruders out. This included constructing increasingly high walls, implementing electrified fences and laser beams. Alongside these ‘investments’ and design innovations came the massive growth of the private security industry. A new mentality emerged which focused on the fortification of home and office space. Initially, this was strongly supported and bolstered by the private security industry that had vested interests in the rush to monitor space and strengthen security. Whether or not high walls and electrified fences do indeed reduce experiences of crime victimisation for individual home owners and residents is debatable. The private security industry and the police now suggest that walls might not provide the security home owners believe they do. This research investigates whether walls, electric fences and beams, among other tools, succeed in reducing fear of crime and victimisation, from the perspective of those who police, i.e., public and private security organisations. The aim is to establish whether policing agents view walls as an aid or hindrance to policing and security management. The ‘praxis’ goal of this research is, through public engagement, to shift paradigms about walls and security and to bring to the fore the importance of natural surveillance and neighbourly contact in making urban spaces safer.

Website
www.stabilityjournal.org/article/view/sta.es/267