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Carola Westermeier: Money as a digital technology

The event will be held in German and simultaneously interpreted into English. In addition, the lecture will be broadcast live from 6 pm. The recorded video will be uploaded to this website a few days after the event.

From contactless payments to mobile wallets and cryptocurrencies, the way we handle money is becoming increasingly digital. As monetary systems fundamentally shape social relationships and the organisation of modern societies, the differing modes of transacting digital money alter these relations. Everyday transactions are processed on platforms provided by Tech Giants instead of banks, raising concerns about data privacy and market dominance. Digital money is increasingly recognised as a technology that can be innovated and enhanced. As a reaction, central banks around the world develop their own new forms of digital money to counter attempts by Tech Giants to issue their own currencies with potentially global reach. Central Bank Digital Currencies, such as the digital euro, link monetary sovereignty to issues of digital autonomy and aim to provide a (public) infrastructure for financial relations in light of increasing geoeconomic tensions.

Analysing money as a technology thus shifts our attention towards new questions: Which relations are technologically enhanced, which are excluded? How is the data generated by digital financial transactions handled and how are they stored? Who has the ability to enable and sanction (international) payment transactions?  


Carola Westermeier: Money as a digital technology

Wednesday, 03 July 2024 | 6 pm | Admission 5:30 pm
Berlin Social Science Center (WZB)
Reichpietschufer 50, 10785 Berlin | Room A300




Carola Westermeier is a Fellow at the Institute of Sociology at TU Darmstadt, supported by the Young Investigator Programme of the Centre Responsible Digitality. She is on leave from her position as a temporary academic counsellor at JLU Giessen for the fellowship. She leads research projects on financial infrastructures and geo-economic security and money as a data carrier. Her research addresses the connections between technology and political economy, for example with regard to the relevance of data in the digital economy and for political security. Another focus lies on the question of how financial infrastructures influence the international financial and security order and how geopolitical tensions affect the development of new financial technologies.


17:30 Uhr  Admission
18:00 Uhr  Welcome and Introduction by Tobi Müller
18:10 Uhr  Lecture by Carola Westermeier
18:50 Uhr  Moderated discussion and Q&A with the audience
19:30 Uhr  Get-Together


To be accredited as a press representative, please contact Frederik Efferenn.

Making sense of the digital society

The current rapid pace of technological change is creating enormous uncertainties. Comprehensive explanations are needed in order to better understand the changes and shape a common future. The Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society (HIIG) and the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) are therefore continuing the Making sense of the digital society lecture series, which was launched in 2017. The aim is to develop a European perspective on the current transformation process of our time and its social impact.





The event is organised together with the research group ‘Politics of Digitalization’ at the Berlin Social Science Center (WZB).


Eine Anmeldung ist für diese Veranstaltung aktuell nicht möglich.

Event date

03.07.2024 | 6.00 pm – 8.00 pm ical | gcal


WZB | Berlin Social Science Center,  Reichpietschufer 50,  10785 Berlin


Lena Henkes

Researcher: Knowledge & Society


This high-profile lecture series thrives to develop a European perspective on the processes of transformation that our societies are currently undergoing.


Once a month we publicly discuss the impact of digitalisation on the society. Therefore we invite special guests and engage in a dialogue with the audience.


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