The quest for silver bullets: Implications for our construction of citizenship

Peter Lehr*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In this first chapter of the book’s third part, I set the scene by discussing our conception and construction of citizenship. My core argument here is that new technologies, especially security-related technologies, change our view of what it means to be a citizen. In particular, I draw on the ‘Agency of Things’ as well as the ‘Internet of Things’ to highlight the relevance of technology in that regard. Since it is not only about technology per se but also the willingness to make use of it without too many critical questions asked, I also discuss some controversial views of politicians who seem to be willing to trade civil liberties for more security. I conclude this chapter by pointing out that we are already on a slippery slope in that regard, sleepwalking away from being citizens of liberal democracies towards being citizens of less liberal states driven by an ‘us versus them’ dichotomy much more pronounced than it is right now.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvanced Sciences and Technologies for Security Applications
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Publication series

NameAdvanced Sciences and Technologies for Security Applications
ISSN (Print)1613-5113
ISSN (Electronic)2363-9466


  • Agency of things
  • Citizenship
  • Exclusive citizenship
  • Inclusive citizenship
  • Internet of things
  • Nationalism
  • Universalism
  • Utilitarianism


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