Private Security Companies

Transforming Politics and Security in the Czech Republic

by

This study presents intriguing analysis of the impact of private security companies' practices upon the fields of security and politics in the Czech Republic. It situates cases concerning ABL, the biggest Czech private security company, in the larger social, political, legal and economic contexts of the booming private security business. This company's extensive linkages with Czech politics suggest that the continued absence of specific legislation for the regulation of private security companies' activities is due to too much, rather than too little, political interest in their activities. This is problematic, arguably, because the practices of private security companies have already contributed to a significant transformation of the Czech security field by enhancing the commodification and depoliticization of security, while ABL's use of security methods for political purposes and a business approach to politics have profoundly transformed the field of politics. Reflecting the growing interest in the privatization of security, this timely study unpacks the relationship between politics, business and security in the Czech Republic.


  • Palgrave Macmillan; July 2015
  • ISBN 9781137477521
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: Private Security Companies
  • Author: Oldrich Bureš
  • Imprint: Palgrave Macmillan

In The Press

"Oldřich Bureš provides a critically-needed view into the privatization of force in a country that has, until now, remained on the outskirts of much of the literature on force privatization. The Czech Republic's unique experiences with private security companies, and Bureš's incredibly robust approach to examining them, together make Private Security Companies a thrilling contribution to the body of literature on force privatization." – Dr Molly Dunigan, RAND Corporation, Carnegie Mellon University, USA

"An original and comprehensive analysis of the private security industry in the Czech Republic, its close linkages with Czech policy makers, and its impact on politics and public security. Oldřich Bureš's book is of interest to a wide range of scholars and practitioners from politics, international relations, criminology, sociology and law." – Professor Elke Krahmann, Professor of Security Studies at Brunel University, UK

"Bureš shows that the privatization processes in Central and Eastern Europe have affected also security and the politics surrounding its provision. His book opens a rare window on the Czech context where security entrepreneurs are core to both security and politics. It inspires questions about similar processes elsewhere.'' – Professor Anna Leander, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark

About The Author

Oldřich Bureš is the head of the Center for Security Studies at Metropolitan University Prague. His research focuses primarily on the privatization of security and the fight against terrorism. His work has been published in Security Dialogue, Terrorism and Political Violence, International Studies Review, Cooperation and Conflict and several other key journals.