On Wednesday, July 29, the GeoTech Center hosted the third episode of the Data Salon Series in partnership with Accenture. The virtual event hosted Dr. Divya Chander, Chair of Neuroscience at Singularity University, and Ms. Krista Pawley, Principal and Culture and Reputation Architect at Imperative Impact, in conversation with audience members from across the data and innovation space.
The attendees acknowledged that the collection and use of data have become an integral element of every internet-connected individual’s life. As our digital landscape continues to evolve, though, it is time to consider what intentional policy and design choices could allow for greater data ownership within people-centered structures.
Much of the presentation focused on the concept of data trusts, which would allow individuals to choose who can access their data and for what purposes. The panelists explained that governments and the private sector alike are working to develop strategies that maximize individual privacy, as the public expresses greater interest in protecting data. However, few institutions have landed upon successful solutions in practice that can protect user privacy while allowing for the high levels of analysis (including machine or AI-enabled learning) they have come to expect.
The panelists explored the possibility of a hybrid approach, which would allow users to opt in to sharing data for certain purposes, or which could employ trusted intermediaries to authenticate data without it ever having to be attached to an individual.
Attendees recommended a number of articles for further reading, offering potential novel approaches to data privacy.
- Mary Rundle et al, ““Personhood” and Digital Identity in the Information Society,” OECD STI Working Paper 2007/7
- Robert Gellman, “FAIR INFORMATION PRACTICES: A Basic History,” Version 2.19, October 7, 2019
- Sabelo Mhlambi, “From Rationality to Relationality: Ubuntu as an Ethical & Human Rights Framework for Artificial Intelligence Governance,” Harvard Kennedy School Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, Spring 2020, Issue 2020-009
- Steve Pannifer and Justin Gage, “Making Sense of Identity Networks,” DIACC and Consult Hyperion, April 2020
Henry Westerman joins the GeoTech Center as a Project Assistant, having served as an intern with the team this past summer. He is a member of the Class of 2021 in the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service studying Science, Technology, and International Affairs with a concentration in Security. Henry has previously interned with the Library of Congress Digital Strategy team, and at the Department of State Office of Science and Technology Cooperation. Henry’s primary academic interests include geospatial analysis, emerging technologies, and digital sensemaking; he also dabbles in Spanish and Philosophy.
Championing new technologies and data to benefit people, prosperity, and peace.