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Dimensions of Privacy

Dimensions of Privacy

Coordinator

Prof. B. Roessler

Current members of the research group

Prof. B. Roessler, Prof. Ruud Janssens, Dr. Giliam de Valk (Ad de Jong Centrum) close cooperation with the ca. 30 members of the Amsterdam Platform for Privacy Research (APPR), especially Prof. Nico van Eijk (rechten); PhD student mr. Bart van der Sloot; external promovendus Andrew Roberts; there is  a lot of personal overlap with the group Philosophy and Public Affairs

Description of the research programme

Privacy has long been considered to be a thoroughly individualist notion. The value of privacy has been understood in terms of individual freedom and individual well-being. The protection and maintenance of privacy is then conceived in terms of control and discretion exercised by the individual. Although this is not wrong, it is not the whole story either. Privacy clearly also has a social value - a value for the society - as well as a democratic value. As to the social value, part of the research project is concerned with the changing norms of relationships (on SNS, for instance) under the influence of new technologies, because social norms of informational privacy govern all relationships in our society. 

It is only since the Snowden revelations that the democratic dimension or value of privacy has become particularly clear: the protection of privacy and the right to privacy is not only of importance for individuals and social relations, but also forthe functioning of our democratic societies. This research-group is especially concerned with the debates on the social and democratic dimensions of privacy and seeks to develop new normative frameworks for the value of privacy in the digital democratic society.

Envisaged results

Organization of lectures and workshops, in close cooperation with the APPR

Articels in Journals; after the publication of the first volume on  Social Dimensions of Privacy: Interdisciplinary Perspectives, Cambridge University Press (under contract; forthcoming 2015), ed. by Beate Roessler & Dorota Mokrosinska, a follow up volume is planned by Beate Roessler.

An NWO project within the Free Competition program has been submitted

Societal relevance

The research in this programm aims to deepen the understanding of the moral, political, and legal dilemmas in which privacy is involved and to adapt and enrich the protection and maintenance of privacy in the context of quickly developing new technologies. This way, it helps policy makers to get a deeper insight into the moral-political issues surrounding privacy and its meaning for liberal democracies in the digitized world.

This research group is active in the following constellations:

Cultural & Social Critique

Amsterdam Platform for Privacy Research