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14.07.2016 - Privacy at the Intersection of Ethics and Technology

Keynote by Prof Helen Nissenbaum

Advances in digital technologies have stirred great anxiety over privacy. Many have tried to pinpoint the threats and have supported protection through public policy and technology design. My lecture will address these issues. It will describe the theory of contextual integrity, which defines privacy as appropriate flow of personal information: technology that facilitates surveillance, data collection, and unfettered distribution threaten privacy because they cause major disruptions in information flow in stark contrast to those we expect. These disruptions are problematic not only because they threaten harm to individual data subjects, but also because they may undermine the integrity of societal contexts, such as, healthcare, education, the family, and democratic citizenship. Contextual integrity challenges dominant approaches to regulation and technology design that place too much emphasis on secrecy and subjects’ control through mechanisms of notice and consent. It argues that these approaches can actually impede privacy protection, urging regulators, researchers, and technology designers to support specific constraints on information flow and use — instead of merely handing off this responsibility to individuals.

This event will be held in English. Please register above.

Video recording

Prof. Helen Nissenbaum

Expert for Privacy and Online Trust, New York University

Prof. Dr. Alexander Pretschner; Moderation

Professor of Software Engineering, Technische Universität München

Prof. Dr. Alexander Filipović

Professor of Media Ethics, Hochschule für Philosophie München

Assistant Prof. Jens Grossklags

Haile Family Early Career Assistant Professor of Information Sciences and Technology, PennState College of Information Sciences and Technology

Stephan Micklitz

Director of Engineering at Google Germany

18:00 - 20:00 Uhr


Privacy at the Intersection of Ethics and Technology


Panel discussion:

Alexander Filipović is a media ethicist at the Munich School of Philosophy. After his studies in Theology, Communication Sciences and German Literature Alexander receives his doctoral degree in 2006. He is now especially interested in ethical questions in the context of journalism, entertainment and digitalisation. Challenges of the digital transformation of our media are a major focus of his lectures and publications. Alexander coordinates the Netzwerk Medienethik ( and is editor of the media ethics journal Communicatio Socialis (

Stephan Micklitz in an Engineering Director on the Identity, Privacy and Security team in Munich. His team focuses on providing users with tools and controls to manage their privacy and security when using Google – helping them to keep their data secure and protect their privacy. MyAccount and the Google Dashboard are examples of such tools Stephan’s team has built. Stephan joined Google in 2007 as a Software Engineer, and has been working on the Identity, Privacy and Security team since 2009.

Stephan studied computer science at the TU München and completed his masters degree (Dipl. Inf.) in 2003. Prior to joining Google he worked for several software companies as an engineer and consultant for business software solutions.

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