An event entitled ‘Crime, media and institutional scandal’ took place at Bournemouth University (BU), which saw former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lord Ian Blair and Professor Chris Greer, of City University London, debate the nature of institutional scandal.
The free, public event, organised by BU Professors Ann Brooks, Candida Yates and Barry Richards, was held as part of a ‘Dialogues in Social Sciences’ series of events, which aim to look at changes in higher education, scandal, and radicalisation.
Lord Blair, who stepped down as Commissioner in 2008, raised questions about cultures within organisations, and scrutinising the acts of senior management. He also talked about the rise of the 24-hour global media, and the role of journalists in scandals.
In talking about his attendance of the event, Lord Blair said: “The reason that I am here is that I am interested in the topic, and what I’ll be saying tonight is that there are a number of features about scandal which are both for good and ill in terms of them being unravelled.
“The good is that we are undoubtedly in an era in which people are demanding answers to what appears to be incompetence, mismanagement, greed and everything else. On the other hand, there is the potential for the media to see disasters which are a natural part of life as scandalous.”
Professor Chris Greer, co-panellist and Head of the Department of Sociology at City University London, asked the audience to consider that scandals were “more than just good stories”, and question at which point scandals are clearly recognised as such in the media.
Organiser, Chair and Professor of Sociology at BU, Ann Brooks said: “The aim of this public seminar programme is to create an interdisciplinary, cross-Faculty series of engagement ‘dialogues’ in the social sciences, drawing on national and international figures to debate key topics in the field including the future of higher education, crime, media and institutional scandal and radicalisation.
“The Series of events are organised by Professors Ann Brooks, Barry Richards, and Candida Yates. The BU Events are funded by the BU Fusion Investment Fund. I’d like to thank our range of engaging and informative speakers and inquisitive audiences."