Surveillance, risk and preemption on the Australian border

Dean Wilson, Leanne Weber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper we will map and analyze Australian border surveillance technologies. In doing so, we wish to interrogate the extent to which these surveillance practices are constitutive of new regimes of regulation and control. Surveillance technologies, we argue, are integral to strategies of risk profiling, social sorting and “punitive pre-emption.” The Australian nation-state thus mirrors broader global patterns in the government of mobility, whereby mobile bodies are increasingly sorted into kinetic elites and kinetic underclasses. Surveillance technologies and practices positioned within a frame of security and control diminish the spaces that human rights and social justice might occupy. It is therefore imperative that critical scholars examine the moral implications of risk and identify ways in which spaces for such significant concerns might be forged.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124-141
Number of pages18
JournalSurveillance and Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


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