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The case of culture: Extractive practices of work-life integration

From “move fast and break things” to a modern day workplace panopticon: Tech companies are treating their own workforce as mere productivity machines, driving the insatiable thirst for growth and shareholder value. This new kind of work-life integration tends to encourage long working days, visible busyness, and the lack of true time off.

Shaping the Airbnb Experience: How platform executives manage their service providers

Have you ever noticed that Airbnb stays tend to resemble each other quite a bit, regardless of whether you are staying in, say, London or Lisbon? If so, this is no coincidence. In this blog post, I describe the strategies and tactics which platforms such as Airbnb use to manage service providers in the sharing economy and create distinctive customer experiences.

The case of nature: Digital Ecocide by Tech Companies

Digital tech companies and global digitalization trends are adding to the existing pressures on our natural environment on several ways. In fact, all six Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that relate to ecological sustainability are impacted by the digital tech industry.

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Wahlkompass Digitales 2021

Lack of digital policy in the truel of the chancellor candidates – An emancipation of the electorate

nsights into the projects in the field of digital policy are not yet available in the truels. However, if you would like to find out more, you have come to the right place: Three researchers from HIIG and HBI write about their opinions on digital policy and refer to the Digital Electoral Compass. It gives journalists and voters the opportunity to get an idea of the situation for themselves. 

OpenAI

When will the first AI top the New York Times bestseller list?

Language generators based on artificial intelligence are producing increasingly convincing texts. This led us to wonder: Could an AI guest-author an article in Encore? This AI-written text is the result of our experiment.

Myth: AI Models are abstract and do not need personal data

In supervised machine learning, models are based on abstractions from training data. The models themselves, while structurally influenced by the training data, do not contain the data themselves. It therefore…

Open Access, but not for free: Resilient financing for academic publishing

Open access publishing does cost money too. But if the reader does not pay, who else is? Modes of community publishing and funding provide answers and hint towards a crucial set of values for academic exchange. Several research projects follow-up on this and work on practical solutions.

With Open Mind and Open Source – the democratic potential of public good-oriented AI

Dr. Theresa Züger talks to Patricia Leu from Prototype Fund about the Public Interest AI project and the democratic potential of AI for the common good.

Possibilities for Change – Higher Education and Digitalisation

Bronwen and Moritz highlight the institutional challenges posed to Higher Education Institutions by the pandemic and outline how these can be viewed as a window of opportunity

Myth: AI can accurately predict and optimize human behavior

People analytics promises to objectify and optimize employee-related decisions. Managers place high expectations on these tools, especially with a growing number of employees who work from home.

Germany: Hidden Champion of Online Platform Work?

Online freelancing is booming, not only in Germany. A new research hub at the University of Oxford shows how relevant the online gig-economy has become.

It’s a match! Or racism?

No technology is neutral. Dating apps like Tinder and Grindr can perpetuate stereotypical assumptions about sexual preferences and reinforce a racist flirting culture. Can the law intervene?

Myth: AI will save us from climate change

AI provides powerful tools to tackle climate change in various applications. It can support the mitigation of climate change, for instance, by helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions within various applications.

“Just start, because the timing is always wrong”

Artificial intelligence (AI) is only something for large corporations? The public perception often assumes this. But small and medium-sized enterprises can also benefit from AI.

When Online Research Can Do Harm

While research ethics are a core component to all social research, digital ethnography poses an additional set of unique challenges that must be addressed while researching vulnerable populations, but still advice for digital ethnographers in terms of the ethical dilemmas of researching and marketing to vulnerable populations online is scarce.

Caught in the jungle of bureaucracy? Can European Platform Entrepreneurship succeed?

In the ongoing regulatory debate on digital platform businesses, European platform companies are often bypassed. Whenever there is a public debate on European platforms, the underlying discussion revolves around questions like: Why don’t we have a ‘European Google or Facebook’? Why don’t we compete globally in tech? Yet, platform businesses come in many shapes and sizes.

One Council to Rule Them All: Can Social Media Become More Democratic?

Parliaments set the rules for democracies. Platforms rule their private online spaces. But as online spaces become ever more important for democratic discourse, we ask ourselves: Can we make platforms…

Myth: AI treats everyone equally and makes predictions fairly

Algorithmic power is accumulated at the hands of data companies that re-enforce new colonial dynamics.

Myth: AI is disrupting knowledge work

Recently, applications based on machine learning have made enormous progress and can now take over tasks such as translations, document search or image recognition.

SMEs and AI-Startups: How to keep track

HIIG has been supporting the Mittelstand 4.0 Competence Centre Berlin in the _Gemeinsam digital project as a consortium partner since 2016. We report from the AI company delegations: Which AI…

Myth: AI understands me, but I can’t understand it

We can contribute multiple perspectives to designing and implementing AI systems that impact us all differently.

When your next sex date is only zero feet away. Geolocal technology and gay male online dating with the app Grindr in Berlin (Part 1)

How does the search for non-committal sex inscribe itself into daily routines that homosexual men use to shape their lives in Berlin? For the Digital Society Blog, the author presents various central theses from his research.

Myth: AI algorithms decide what you see online

One myth posits that AI algorithms are tools used unilaterally by corporations to control what we see; the other argues that these algorithms are mere mirrors, and we are the ones who control what we see online.