Dear friends and fellow researchers,

Science needs the freedom to develop. Only then can it cross disciplinary and institutional boundaries. We believe in unconventional ideas and their potential to help us answer the questions of our interconnected present and future. That's why we are involving stakeholders from all parts of society in our academic research through cooperation. What do we achieve with this? Find out in this issue.

Stay informed and inspired as you explore new ideas and perspectives,

Jeanette Hofmann | Björn Scheuermann | Thomas Schildhauer | Wolfgang Schulz


AI, Explained in Human Terms | Project completion

Our research team set out to make AI explainable for civil society. To this end, it has developed two explanatory models in collaboration with citizens and experts. The technical model shows the limits and possibilities of AI systems using the example of facial recognition. The team has also developed a playful approach that shows how AI systems are already being used in society today.
| Check out our experiments (in German) and card game.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 1

Alternative Platform Models | Project completion

In five deep dives, we have looked at current challenges on existing social platforms. In short papers, we now present various proposed solutions on topics such as decentralisation, disinformation and platform advisory boards. All issues are now online and were created in collaboration with the Bertelsmann Foundation's Upgrade Democracy team.
| You can find the short papers on our project page.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 2

Safe in Data Traffic | New project

Under the GDPR, advertisers must tell internet users in a simple yet comprehensive way what data they collect and how they use it. We investigate ways of informing citizens about possible risks in this context. What risk descriptions can they understand and what might sensible intervention options look like?
| More information about our empirical research is available here.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 3

EdTech Redefined | Open call for case studies

Would you like to explore the role of technology in higher education? Then apply and become part of our research activities for resilient universities. We are looking for four to six degree programmes as a starting point for our field research. This means you’ll get the opportunity to join us in collaboratively exploring and learning how educational technology…
| …can influence the creativity and resilience of your institution.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 4


Impact without Imposition | North and South

How can scientists from the Global North address grand challenges for the Global South without imposing their ideas on local communities? Ali Aslan Gümüsay and Georg von Richthofen present possible solutions. Their reflections are based on our project Sustainability, Entrepreneurship and Global Digital Transformation.
| Read up on the three principles, lessons and challenges.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 5

Valuating Words | Web search advertising

Advertising is an important source of revenue in the digital media industry. One popular form is web search advertising, which is targeted based on words. Based on extensive interviews, Anna Jobin has explored how advertising professionals understand Google's "linguistic capitalism". Overall, this article contributes to the critical literature on web search…
| …and meaning-making in algorithmic media.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 6

Digitalisation as a Challenge | Sociological theory

Katharina Block and Jörg Pohle have published a special issue on how sociology can contribute to a better understanding of digitalisation. A central theme of the articles is the distinction between analogue and digital, especially the shift in norms and standards. What potential transformations do digital technologies offer and where do their limits lie?
| All articles are open access.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 7

HIIG BOOKSHELF | Further worthwhile publications


Women in the Tech Sector | Mauritania

In a multi-stakeholder dialogue on 4 November, we’ll be aiming to arrive at a common understanding of the role of women* in Mauritania's digital industries. Together with tech entrepreneurs, civil society actors and policy makers, we will be exploring the challenges and successes they experience. We will also be developing strategies to address issues such as unequal access…
| …to digital infrastructure or digital education.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 8

Daniel Miller | Global evolution of smart tech

As part of our Making Sense of the Digital Society lecture series, Daniel Miller, professor of anthropology at University College London, will be our guest in Berlin on 21 November. He will be presenting the results of ten years of ethnographic research on the use of digital media in different population groups and revealing the social effects that these devices are having around the world – from China to Italy and from Uganda to Brazil.
| You can register for on-site participation here.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 9

Laboratory | Citizen participation

We are developing new ideas on what citizen participation should look like in the future. To this end, we will be immersing residents of the city of Berlin in an interactive simulation of a participation process. The workshop, which will use the example of measures to improve air quality in the city, will take place on 25 November. It is part of our Data & Smart City Governance project.
| The event will be held in German.
Quarterly-November-2023 – 10

Shifting AI Controversies | International conference

Our Shaping 21st Century AI research team is organising an international conference on Artificial Intelligence controversies in January 2024. Interdisciplinary contributions will explore what kind of interventions we need to shape society-centred AI. Are we currently having the public controversies about AI that we should? Or is AI panic…
| …distracting us from real and relevant concerns?
Quarterly-November-2023 – 11

Beyond HIIG I Events that caught our eye

Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society (HIIG)
Französische Straße 9, 10117 Berlin, Germany | info@hiig.de
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