Safety & Security Research Symposium at the Tampere University

How do safety and security look like in digitalization? How do we prevent and detect infectious diseases in the scope of global health? What are the challenges of security governance and management? These and other questions were discussed at the Security and Safety Research Symposium, hosted by the University Tampere, on the 10.10.2019. More than 200 people coming from the Academia, Businesses, NGOs and Public Agencies took part in the event.

The day commenced with a warm welcome in the form of a little breakfast and coffee. The thematic start was made with a panel discussion on “What brings about sustainability change in safety and security?”, consisting of six discussants from different countries and with different backgrounds, where also Business Tampere, and with that Tampere as a destination and location for businesses, was represented by Heini Wallander.

After the panel discussion, nine different talks and discussion took place at three different times, showing how diverse the topic of Safety & Security is and how many areas it addresses.  The presentations and discussions were available in English and in Finnish, allowing also the international audience to find out more about the research which is being conducted in Tampere and in other parts of Finland. Not only did the event give the possibility to hear from the experts in this field, but it also offered space for discussion and exchange: between the participants, but also between participants and speakers.

Based on the feedback, visitors were very satisfied with the multidisciplinary program. The number of participants exceeded our expectations, tells Director of Safety and Security Cluster of Tampere Region Risto Honkonen from Tampere University.

Importance of various perspectives

Safety does not only mean, that we know how to react when we have to react, but the most important tool of safety is prevention. Events like the Security and Safety Research Symposium help to understand, which challenges we have to address, but also which topics will be relevant in the future.

In a Smart City, technology plays a crucial role: How do we design solutions, so that they are safe by design? How do we want to implement technologies that assure our safety without leaving anyone out? Under this premises especially the session on “Security issues and possibilities of Face Recognition technology” was very insightful. It gave different insights on the history of artificial intelligence, from license plate recognition to Face-ID, but also on the ethical questions related to security technologies.

The day was closed by a talk of Catia Confortini on “Feminist Perspectives on Safety and Security”, which gave insights on understanding safety as an inter sectional topic. In order to assure safety, it is important that we understand ourselves and the people around us as a part of a community. We should recognize the challenges different groups might be facing and acknowledge that safety concerns might be very diverse.

This inspiring day was a good reminder that we developers should always think from different perspectives and try to understand the bigger picture. In addition to technological advancements, we need to be aware of ethical questions and cultural aspects, says Business Advisor Heini Wallander from Business Tampere.

Photo: Mirella Mellonmaa

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