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The theories underlying community policing received new impetus with the recent advent of smartphones and social media and especially the notion of user-generated content (UGC) where the users are citizens engaged in closer interaction with their local community and law enforcement agency. The five years 2010-2014 have seen a rapid upsurge of smartphone apps aimed at improving crime reporting and other forms of UGC and interaction associated with community policing.

The research project CITYCoP (Citizen Interaction Technologies Yield Community Policing) analysed the common features and the best practices embraced by apps which have been successful worldwide and determined why apparently promising ones have failed. It then produced a uniquely European solution including a smartphone app and an on-line portal, which are capable of being deployed in every European city while still retaining the “local flavour” and diversity.

As one of the CITYCoP project partners, the BIM helpt to develop a human rights framework to ensure that the human rights of all those involved in the use of the app are protected and safeguarded. The BIM team also contributed the chapter “A Human Rights-Based Approach to Community Policing (CoP): Participation, Equality and Non-Discrimination with Special Focus on New Internet Communication Technologies (ICTs)” to the final publication Changing Communities, Changing Policing

During the project, the BIM also held the Human Rights Talk "Community Policing - people’s police or a policing people?", bringing together panelists from academia, police and the human rights field to discuss this conflicted theme (16th May 2017).

The CITYCoP Final Conference, presenting the academic research carried out as well as the SecureU mobile application developed, was held in Florence on 17th - 18th April 2018.

Further information on the project: ®

Persons involved: 


Petr Kudelka, Waltraud Kotschy, Anna Müller-Funk, Karl Schönswetter, Hannes Tretter

Project management: 

Fiona Steinert and Anna-Müller Funk

Contact persons: 

Anna Müller-Funk,

Lead Organisation: 
University of Groningen (RUG), Holland
Partner organisations: 
22 partner organisations, including the University of Malta, the Fraunhofer Institut für Intelligente Analyse- und Informationssysteme, the Hoplite Software, the City of Florence, the Nutcracker Research and the South Yorkshire Police.
Project start: 
Project end: 
Project completed: 
Funded by: 
European Commission, Directorate General Research, Horizon 2020 Programme
PDF icon CITYCoP project flyer104.75 KB

Funded from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 653811


The contents of this website are the sole responsibility of the BIM and its project partners and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission.