The Business of Building Walls

Addressing vulnerability and promoting security
Posted Dec 02, 2019 | Transnational Institute, Mark Akkerman

Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Europe is once again erecting border walls – this time in fear of refugees and migrants. Since the 1990s, EU member states and countries in the Schengen Area have constructed almost 1000 km of land walls, accompanied by ‘maritime walls’ extend over another 4750 kilometres. In this publication by the Transnational Institute, Mark Akkerman explores the building of walls in Europe, which has fuelled and benefited from the expansion of public spending on border security by the EU and its member states. He suggests that the main beneficiaries are the businesses involved, and that the barriers to contemporary migration are not so much the fencing, but the vast array of technology that underpins it, from radar systems through drones, to surveillance cameras and biometric fingerprinting systems.


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