PhD project within Smart City & Smart Buildings


Stine Illum,
Industrial PhD


University of Copenhagen, Department of Anthropology



Since the Danish national intelligence and security service (PET) has assessed the terror threat against Denmark to be significant and a number of terrorist attacks in neighboring cities such as Berlin, Stockholm, and Paris have taken place in public spaces, The City of Copenhagen has started planning how to secure The Inner City of Copenhagen and its public spaces better against terrorism. The PhD-project has followed this counter-terrorism process.

Ethnographic fieldwork has been conducted at The Municipality of Copenhagen, The Danish Security and Intelligence Service as well as in private security companies, and architecture firms. Thereby getting an understanding of the professional practice of counter-terrorism in Denmark, including the rationales and roles at play in their work. Fieldwork has also been conducted at street level in the Inner City of Copenhagen. Thereby getting an understanding of how people as part of their everyday lives experience the so-called significant terror threat, including which decisions and precautions they make in relation to the terror threat, and perceptions and reactions to the new counter-terrorism installations. Insights from the PhD project inform the architecture firm SLA in their work with risk reducing landscapes.


SLA, PPG og Stine Ilum m.fl. (2019). GRØNBOG. Et debatoplæg om terrorsikring af byrum og bygninger. Realdania, Innovationsfonden og Dansk Live
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Sikkerhed og arkitektur. Arkitekten 08, oktober 2019, Vol. 21, pp. 7-10
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Klimatilpasning og terrorsikring – Nye barrierer for universelt design? Trafik & Veje, November 2018, pp. 20-23
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Fem år efter angrebene i København: Sådan har terror ændret bybilledet. DR. 14. februar 2020.
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Branchesamarbejde efterlyses: Hvordan skal dansk terrorsikring se ud?, Politiken, 1. juli.
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