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Volker Eick

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Preventive Urban Discipline: Rent-a-cops and Neoliberal Glocalization in Germany

Though not a new phenomenon, private security companies have mushroomed since the early 1990s all over Germany (and beyond). The withdrawal of state responsibility for public services in general goes with the privatization of security specifically. Using the concepts of “roll-out” and “roll-back” neoliberalism, this article provides an overview of the development of private security companies in Germany and their most current activities. It focuses on the (extra-legal) activities of rent-a-cops in German social housing complexes and “migration management” of asylum-seekers. Additionally, examples of protest and resistance against the practices of private security companies, especially against neofascist security staff, are given. Thus, the article analyzes the vanishing of state responsibilities and the “roll-out” of neoliberalism, German style.

roll-out neoliberalism, roll-back neoliberalism, Germany, privatization of security, glocalization, governance

Citation: Social Justice Vol. 33, No. 3 (2006): 66-84