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General Overview

EICS Framework


Region of Reference

  • AfricaAfrica
  • AsiaAsia
  • AustraliaAustralia
  • EuropeEurope
  • North-AmericaNorth-America
  • South-AmericaSouth-America
  • WorldWorld


Organisations (NGOs) and citizens are involved in guarding neighbourhoods, improving personal safety, with a specific focus on women and girls. There is general acceptance of the notion that physical surveillance aids in improving security and reduces the fear of crime. The citizen led surveillance teams can be supported by surveillance cameras.

Each neighborhood develops local plan if interventions that the city council funds and supports, i.e. local grassroots policy making. In some cases, a safe company service has been implemented whereby women returning home late at night can have a person charged with ensuring women’s and girl’s safety to accompany them.

Types of Impact

Area Impacted

  • To/from the stop/station/rank
  • Waiting for train/bus/paratransit
  • In the vehicle
  • At interchanges

Time of Day of Impact

  • Day-time travel
  • Night-time travel
  • Peak-time travel
  • Off peak-time travel
All travel time categories can be positively impacted by this intervention, although the literature has examples of some targeted operations that focus on peak hour travel times or night-time travel, especially if there is evidence to support particular times of day being a problem.

Mode Impacted

  • Bus
  • Train
  • Rideshare
  • 4 wheelers informal
  • 3 wheelers informal
  • 2 wheelers informal
  • Cycling
  • Walking
Walking and cycling will be impacted by this intervention.

Demographic impacted

  • Girls
  • Boys
  • Adult Women
  • Men
  • Elderly Women

SWOT Analysis

  • Quick to be implemented

  • Perceived to be very effective

  • Relatively low skills required

  • Scalable to suit budget and need for the resource

  • As soon as implementation stops, the benefits stop

  • Not effective in parts of the neighbourhood where the intervention is not physically present

  • Job creation

  • Other crimes also reduced

  • Crime against other population groups may also reduce

  • Can be resource-intensive

  • Success is dependent on the quality of leadership


Literature is scarce, although there are various anecdotal stories that were discovered, including in Africa. The effectiveness is, however, underpinned by the more extensive literature base on physical security guards and policing, which has a similar effect and results.

  • Perception by (female) passengers
  • Perception by governing bodies
  • Level of confidence in these ratings


Implementation of this intervention can happen quickly and be ramped up over time, depending on the availability of trained staff. The benefits ensue immediately upon implementation and improve as perpetrators become aware of the physical policing presence. Unfortunately, as soon as deployment stops, the benefits start to disappear.

Implementation timeframe

  • 0-1 year
  • 1-3 years
  • >3 years

Timeframe to realise benefits

  • 0-1 year
  • 1-3 years
  • >3 years

Scale of Implementation

Station or

Ease of Implementation

As this is a labour-based approach, it can be easy to implement. Targeted approaches to increase cost-effectiveness may be more difficult to implement, based on the need to generate the evidence base required to inform targeting. The skill level and availability of personnel can also affect the ease of implementation of this measure.

List of References