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Body cameras and police action: uses and impacts of surveillance systems in the military police of the state of São Paulo

Grant number: 22/08513-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2022
Effective date (End): June 30, 2024
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Sociology - Other specific Sociologies
Principal Investigator:Marcos César Alvarez
Grantee:Guilherme Tannus Guerra Silva
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/07923-7 - Center of the Study of Violence - NEV/USP, AP.CEPID


This scientific initiation fellowship seeks to investigate the implementation of new surveillance systems equipped with body-worn cameras (BWCs) by the military police in São Paulo. The BWCs film and capture data on the police routine and have been presented by public forces both as a solution to unlawful conduct against police officers and as a tool to improve police accountability. Preliminary research indicates that the cameras contribute to avoiding the escalation of violence in stop-and-frisk operations and are especially relevant to reducing the use of force by the police. Thus, this research aims at studying the use of BWCs and their impact on the relations between the police and society. Researchers will be dedicated to multiple activities, including literature reviews; mapping the uses of BWCs by the police; a collection of information with police officers, grassroots movements, and experts in security technologies; surveying current legislation on police surveillance; and the analysis of the chain of custody of data collected by the BWCs. This research will provide a better understanding of police practices in public spaces, as well as an assessment of how new forms of surveillance impact people's behavior while interacting with the police.(AU)

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