Human Security and Cooperative Security

Raffaele Federici


The paper will examine different and competing understandings of human security and stresses the task of reconciling these differences as an important challenge for the advocates of an emerging norm inside the local urban or sub-urban communities. It focuses on the perceived tensions between its two salient aspects: ‘freedom from fear’ (more favoured in the West) in terms of a fear of losing power that corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power that corrupts those who are subject to it and ‘freedom from want’ (more favoured in other countries) more (Kent 2005). In other words these paradigms are in East-West faultline, and there are significant differences over its meaning within each camp. Human security represents a significant broadening of the notion of ‘comprehensive security’, which privileged regime security. It also departs from the idea of ‘cooperative security’ which did not address the possible tension between individual and state security. In discussing the barriers to human security in its cultural (freedom from fear) aspects, the paper examines the difficulties in linking human security with intervention, whether hard or soft, inside urban spaces, given concerns about state sovereignty. 


reconceptualising security, fear, risk society

Full Text:



Copyright Licenza Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC-BY)

 - Peer Reviewed Journal

Indexed on: Google Scholar, ProQuest - Sociological Abstracts, Ebsco Discovery Service, Scopus, ERIH PLUS, DOAJ.

Scientific Magazine classified for ANVUR (Resolution n.89 del 6th November 2012)

Scientific Magazine class A according to ANVUR (Resolution of 11th August 2020)

ISSN 2239-8589 | Managing Editor: Debora Viviani | Editor in Chief: Paola Di Nicola