Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

‘Assisted’ facial recognition and the reinvention of suspicion and discretion in digital policing

Fussey, Pete, Davies, Bethan ORCID: and Innes, Martin ORCID: 2021. ‘Assisted’ facial recognition and the reinvention of suspicion and discretion in digital policing. British Journal of Criminology 61 (2) , pp. 325-344. 10.1093/bjc/azaa068

[thumbnail of Innes_Assisted facial recognition.pdf] PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (237kB)


Automated facial recognition (AFR) has emerged as one of the most controversial policing innovations of recent years. Drawing on empirical data collected during the United Kingdom’s two major police trials of AFR deployments—and building on insights from the sociology of policing, surveillance studies and science and technology studies—this article advances several arguments. Tracing a lineage from early sociologies of policing that accented the importance of police discretion and suspicion formation, the analysis illuminates how technological capability is conditioned by police discretion, but police discretion itself is also contingent on affordances brought by the operational and technical environment. These, in turn, frame and ‘legitimate’ subjects of a reinvented and digitally mediated ‘bureaucratic suspicion’.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Crime and Security Research Institute (CSURI)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0007-0955
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 17 May 2021
Date of Acceptance: 7 September 2020
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 21:08

Citation Data

Cited 11 times in Scopus. View in Scopus. Powered By Scopus® Data

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics