We are delighted to announce that Simon Davies has joined LSTS for a 6-month term as Freelance Researcher.
Simon Davies is one of the pioneers of the modern privacy movement. He has more than 25 years’ experience working worldwide with advocates, companies, regulators and government. He is one of the key international experts on identity systems, visual surveillance, privacy-by-design and consumer privacy rights and has established strong global leadership in the field. As founder of the watchdog organisation Privacy International he has worked in more than forty countries and in more than a hundred topic areas and is widely regarded as a key opinion-former in the field.
He has advised a wide range of corporate, government and professional bodies, including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, British Medical Association, British Telecom, Microsoft, Facebook, AOL, eBay, the UK Treasury, the UK Department of Work and Pensions and IBM.
Simon has worked closely with the London School of Economics since 1997. Currently he is a co-director of LSE’s Policy Engagement Network and also a Fellow with Chartered status of the British Computer Society (FBCS CITP).
The PHAEDRA project has published the first part of the second deliverable, which is titled “A compass towards best elements for cooperation ¨between data protection authorities”. The report gives an overview of relevant legislation, networks between data protection authorities (DPAs) and agreements between DPAs. The report also distinguishes different aims of cooperation, and best elements for cooperation between DPAs.
The report was produced by Professor Dr. Paul De Hert and Gertjan Boulet, researchers from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel – Research Group on Law, Science, Technology and Society (VUB-LSTS). The report received a contribution from Auke Wilems, researcher from VUB - Research Group Fundamental Rights & Constitutionalism (FRC).
To access the full report, please click here.
Industrial music has always been attracted by dystopian worlds and apocalyptical aesthethics. The new episode of our MUSIC & SURVEILLANCE series explores the work of Skull:Axis, an artist self-described as ‘paranoid, delusional industrial’ that has devoted a whole record to ‘The Transparent Society’.
Skull:Axis is actually Jason B. Bernard, from Brighton, who is also responsible for the record label Peripheral, officially ‘the home of all things Dark’. Bernard plays intricate electronic music combining metalic and synthetic sounds, somewhere between obscure ambient and uncomfortable experimentation.
‘The Transparent Society’ is originally the title of book published in 1998 by David Brin, in which this science-fiction author tried to argue in favour of extreme social transparency. Skull:Axis’ record, also titled ‘The Transparent Society’ and published by Peripheral in 2013, takes a critical approach to transparency by offering eight dark tracks with eerie sounds and threatening voices repeating numbers. The artwork is black and white and retro, but the surveillance practices sketched out are rather contemporary.
The hypnotic ‘Data Retention Directive‘ evokes the EU legal instrument currently imposing the general retention of communications data of all users of telecommunications networks in Europe. ‘SORM-2′ refers to the Russian system for the monitoring of telecommunications and Internet activity. A track named ‘Surveillance I’ is mirrored by a longer piece called ‘Überwachung I‘. The record wraps up with ‘Hide’, the most peaceful (or empty) track of the lot. The CD is accompanied by a quote by Marc Maron: ‘Surveillance induced morality: relics of cultural retardation’. Text by Gloria González Fuster
picture by corum_l (@flickr)
On Monday 10 February Lonneke van der Velden, of the University of Amsterdam (UvA), will give a presentation in the context of VUB’s Law & Criminology Talks. Titled “Forensic devices for activism: on how activists use mobile device tracking for the production of public proof“, the presentation will describe the various ways in which a mobile phone application turns a problem, that of mobile device tracking, into a method for the production of public proof. Lonneke van der Velden is a PhD candidate at the Digital Methods Initiative (DMI) at the UvA. The event will take place between 12h00 and 14h00. More information here (pdf).
picture by rpeschetz (@flickr)
Gary T. Marx, Professor Emeritus of sociology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and currently Visiting Professor at VUB, will present on 17th February 2014 a public lecture entitled ‘Windows of the Soul: Surveillance and Society in an Age of High Technology’. Professor Marx will illustrate how and why surveillance is neither good nor bad. The emphasis is on a conceptual framework dealing with structures, processes, cultural meanings and experiences that can accommodate and help explain the variation in surveillance tools – such as video, biometry, sensors, RFID chips, GPS, social media and big data sets. Gary T. Marx’ goals are normative, as well as social scientific, as he seeks frameworks for judging and evaluating public policy. Respondent: Prof. Paul De Hert (LSTS). Free entrance, no registration needed. More information: here.
picture by mike licht (@flickr)
On 6th February 2014 will take place at VUB a full day seminar with Prof. Dr. Nikolas Rose, from King’s College London. This expert seminar will fuel contemporary academic debate about biosocial criminology which has been raised in particular by recent scientific findings in fields other than criminology, such as biology, genetics and neuroscience. The event is co-organised by LSTS & CRiS, and sponsored by the VUB Doctoral School of Human Science. More information, including full programme and how to register: here.
This week from 22-24 January 2014 the 7th edition of the international conference Computers, Privacy & Data Protection (CPDP2014) will take place. The programme is now finalised! Please download the full programme (PDF) here.
If you have not registered yet, please do not hesitate to register now!