Working grant - Security for sale: the price we pay to protect Europeans
Through a series of articles, the journalists bring you up to speed on the dominant thinking among the EU policy makers and industry big shots who’ve asserted themselves as “managers of unease,” on the lobbies representing major defence companies, on the billions spent on security research, and on the many ethical issues surrounding this market.
The investigation is multi-faceted and will result in dozens of articles and three documentaries, which will be published from February 22nd onwards over the course of a couple of months. These articles will all be collected in the form of a crash course on this website: www.securityforsale.eu
The project kicks off with a broadcast by VPRO Tegenlicht
and an article by De Correspondent
in the Netherlands. The budget Brussels makes available for European border protection has increased by billions in the past few years. The reason: terrorism and the growing numbers of refugees. New surveillance technology is a growth market that is literally gaining ground because of all the deals Brussels is making with so-called third countries. After the Turkey Deal, agreements are now also being made with countries such as Niger and Sudan, and, if current EU president Malta has anything to say about it, with Libya too, as soon as possible. Money, knowledge and technology in exchange for shifting Europe’s borders. In this documentary
called Superfortress Europe, VPRO Tegenlicht visits Niger and asks: is it working?
European Homeland Security
Another big story investigated by the team covers the emergence of a European ‘Homeland Security’ Industry. It shows how this industry heavily subsidised with taxpayers’ money, influences European and national security policy and creates a demand for security ‘solutions’ that cannot be tested for their effectiveness. The journalists zoom in on two security research programmes of the European Union. Over the past ten years, the European Union has poured nearly €2 billion into advanced security technology research. But who’s reaping the rewards of that investment: the common civilian, or the arms industry?
Surveillance exports of European companies
On the 23rd February the journalists will publish a revealing investigation into surveillance exports of European companies. In order to prevent dictatorships from abusing European technology to crack down on political opposition, the EU started regulating the export of surveillance technology a few years ago.
The participating journalists:
Dimitri Tokmetzis, Maaike Goslinga, Leon de Korte (De Correspondent, Netherlands), Shuchen Tan, William de Bruijn, Marijntje Denters, Nirit Peled (VPRO Tegenlicht, Netherlands), Christian Bergmann, Josa Maria-Schlegel (ARD, Germany), Christian Fuchs (DIE ZEIT, Germany), Kai Biermann (ZEIT ONLINE, Germany), Lorenzo Bagnoli, Lorenzo Bodrero, Luca Rinaldi (Investigative Reporting Project Italy in collaboration with l’Espresso and Il Fatto Quotidiano, Italy), Craig Shaw (Centre for Investigative Journalism, United Kingdom), Leonard Wallentin, Katarina Lind (Journalism++ in collaboration with Svenska Dagbladet, Sweden), Kristof Clerix (Knack, Belgium), Sebastian Gjerding, Lasse Skou Andersen (Dagbladet Information, Denmark), Guillaume Pitron (freelancer in collaboration with Le Monde Diplomatique, France), Hanna Nikkanen, Johanna Vehkoo (Long Play, Finland), and Olaf Meuwese (volunteer and data expert, Netherlands).
File number: JF/JA2B/2016/345
A research grant of €29.000 was allocated to the project on 30/06/2016. This project was supported mainly by Journalismfund but there were also significant contributions from some major European media outlets.