Dear friends and fellow researchers,

How time flies! Did you know that we have already been exploring digital spheres under the HIIG roof for more than ten years? Our thirst for research is still unquenched and currently our focus is on cross-cultural visions of intelligent machines. We also wonder how algorithmic systems need to be designed to best serve the public interest. In addition, we want to learn from the knowledge and expertise of other countries in order to integrate it for sustainable development goals. Let’s work on an inclusive and complex digital society together!

We wish you a pleasant reading!

Jeanette Hofmann | Björn Scheuermann | Thomas Schildhauer | Wolfgang Schulz


Public interest AI | Survey for data set

Our research group will provide a working definition of what it means for an AI system to be designed and deployed in the public interest. To this end, the group published a new survey to foster research on public-interest AI projects and provide accessible data to the general public. The results will furthermore feed an interactive global map of public-interest AI projects. Support our research…
| … by checking out and sharing the survey.

Ethics of digitalisation | From principles to practices

The two-year international project focuses on ethical questions surrounding the digital transformation such as discrimination in AI, access to education or content moderation. Over 150 young researchers from all around the world took part in eight innovative research formats. Just before the project wrapped up, Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier invited us to Bellevue Palace to discuss the results publicly.
| You can watch the event here.
In addition, the final report of our Explainable AI Clinic is fresh off the presses. Understanding how automated decision making (ADM) systems make decisions is key to mitigating potentially negative effects. This interdisciplinary primer provides new insights into how the inexplicable can be explained from a legal, technical and design perspective. So how can we empower people to think with, question or challenge AI?
| Read the report or have a look at the summary on our blog.
Quarterly_April – 1

Crisis science project| Cooperation between science & administration

Our researchers are part of the Development Team in the Crisis Science Project (CRISP). It was commissioned by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to develop a prototype for scientific policy advice in crises delivered by an innovative organisation and software tool. The project brings together an interdisciplinary development team, including experts from public administration, sciences, various innovation agencies and intermediaries. You can find all the results…
|… on this website.
Quarterly_April – 4

Global digital transformation | Sustainability and entrepreneurship

This project kicks off with two studies and a research sprint in Ghana, Kenya and Benin. One study focuses on the regulation of digital platforms and the other on sustainable digital entrepreneurship. In addition, the sprint format offers researchers from different nations the opportunity to collaborate with local practitioners and experts. Together, they are developing interdisciplinary solutions for the policy debate on fair online platform work.
| You will find the sprint announcement on our website.
Quarterly_April – 5

New project | Employee-oriented use of people analytics

The Between Autonomy and Surveillance project investigates how people and organisations use so-called people analytics applications. Advocates of this technology hope to increase employee autonomy through tailored support for individuals to improve personal organisation. However, due to the comprehensive analysis of usage data, many users perceive the applications as a means of surveillance and control of performance and behaviour.
| Have a look at our research questions.
Quarterly_April – 6


Pandemocracy in Europe | Power, parliaments and people in times of COVID-19

Have democracies successfully overcome the challenges of the pandemic? How has the coronavirus impacted democratic principles, processes and values? HIIGster Matthias C. Kettemann is the editor of this book, which situates the dramatic impact of COVID-19, and the fight against the disease, on Europe’s democracies. Throughout its 17 contributions, it sets the theoretical stage and answers the democratic questions raised by health emergencies.
| The book is freely available as open access for all.
Quarterly_April – 2

Adopting AI | In the context of knowledge work

Artificial Intelligence is increasingly being adopted by organisations. In general, scholars agree that the adoption of AI will be associated with substantial changes in the workplace. This new article by Georg von Richthofen, Shirley Ogolla and Hendrik Send explores the changes associated with AI adoption as well as factors that are conducive to AI systems development for knowledge work. Read the empirical insights based…
| … on case studies in eight German organisations.
Quarterly_April – 3

User-perceived privacy risks | Taxonomy to foster accountability of data-based service

Data protection risks have shown to be suitable for accountability in designing for usable privacy. To expand the repertoire of privacy risks as perceived by users in their daily technology use, HIIGster Maximilian von Grafenstein and his colleagues collected 91 risks in various workshops. They focused on the fields of web browsing, voice assistants and connected mobility. This article demonstrates user-perceived risks as a mechanism…
| … to foster accountability for usable privacy in connected devices.
Quarterly_April – 7

Applying AI for social good in entrepreneurship | Promises and perils

Artificial intelligence is viewed as a new breeding ground for entrepreneurial opportunities. While researchers agree that AI holds great potential for economic growth, one question arises: How can AI be applied for the greater good of society? In this new case study, Nicole Siebold, Ali Aslan Gümüsay and Georg von Richthofen examine 15 European companies from different sectors, ranging from education to banking to environmental services.
| Read more about the benefits and risks of social entrepreneurship.
Quarterly_April – 8

Internet Policy Review | The gender of the platform economy

The COVID-19 crisis has accelerated the expansion of the platform economy. This promotes working from distributed places mediated by digital platforms, and is disrupting work and life organisation. To date, the platform economy’s effects on gender equality have gone largely unexplored. At the same time, gender equality achievements are declining and gender-based violence is on the rise. This special issue aims at contributing to cover this gap. Learn more…
| … about the interplay between platform economy and gender.
Licence: Public domain. Ref: https://flic.kr/p/PJeatP

HIIG BOOKSHELF | Further worthwhile publications

HIIG VIDEOS | Interesting moving images


Kanta Dihal | How the world sees intelligent machines | 11.05.2022

How people have imagined intelligent machines over time varies greatly across cultures. Yet as AI begins to realise its potential as a technology, many non-Western perspectives are being marginalised. In her lecture, Kanta Dihal from Cambridge University will present such visions from around the world, highlighting three main themes: the differences between “Eastern” and “Western” visions of AI, the way AI is imagined in communist states…
|... and anti-colonialist narratives of AI.
Quarterly_April – 10

AI & the human conference | Cross-cultural perspectives on science & fiction | 11.–13.05.2022

For millennia, dreams of intelligent machines have shaped our expectations, hopes and fears of artificial intelligence. These visions diverge from reality and blur the line between science and fiction. The German-Japanese conference explores how imaginations of technology influence political, economic and civil society debates around the world. The central question is: What can we learn about our own self-image as humans from the discourses on sentient machines?
| Have a look at the programme and conference topics.
Quarterly_April – 9

DUCAH | 2022+ | 24.05.2022

The founding concept year of the Digital Urban Center for Aging & Health (DUCAH) initiative is over. The cooperatively organised network aims to open up and harness the potential of digitalisation for the social and health economy. Its members work on innovative digital solutions that relieve the burden on care staff and make everyday life easier for older people and their relatives. Now the DUCAH network is initiating the next steps.
| Here you can find all information about the initiative.
Quarterly_April – 11

Beyond HIIG | Events that caught our eye

6 – 10 June 2022 | RightsCon | Online

8 – 10 June 2022 | re:publica | Berlin
Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society (HIIG)
Französische Straße 9, 10117 Berlin, Germany | info@hiig.de
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