From October 1–3, 2018, the “biggest party of the year,” at least by its own account, took place in Berlin, even if the cold temperatures and two days of continuous rainfall meant that turn-out was somewhat smaller than hoped. Over these three days, German Unity Day was marked and celebrated around the Brandenburg Gate and the Straße des 17. Juni. iRights.Lab was on-site with its own information stand, presenting itself as a partner in the field of “future & innovation.”
Visitors were able to talk with our experts about the key issues in a digital society and better acquaint themselves with the work of the lab. The topics of artificial intelligence, smartphones in schools, and communication over social networks were the subjects of particular interest.
Among the projects presented were a cooperative endeavor with the Foundation for Remembrance, Responsibility and Future, in which we are working to develop models to promote historical-political education in a digital society; our joint project with the Bertelsmann Foundation to develop quality criteria for algorithmic processes; and our research accompanying the work of the “mFund” mobility fund, on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, in which we deal with data governance concepts.
Our book 3TH1CS — Die Ethik in digitaler Zeit (3TH1CS – A reinvention of ethics in the digital age?) also met with great interest. Visitors to our information stand could win copies of this book, in which several international experts examine and answer the ethical and moral questions raised by technological progress across the most diverse fields in our society.
In addition, we presented our partner project with iRights e.V., “ANNA — Das vernetzte Leben” (“ANNA — Connected life”), which deals with the role of algorithms and artificial intelligence in everyday life. In addition to the film “Observed & Evaluated”, visitors could receive information and materials while talking to the team behind the project, which is supported by the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV).
On the first day of the event, Mayor Michael Müller also visited the iRights.Lab stand and spoke to the staff about various projects and topics that have the potential to play an important role in the future. We assume that developments in the digitization in Berlin and in digital policy in general will only continue to accelerate.
The weather notwithstanding, iRights.Lab Director Philipp Otto was pleased with the result: “We don’t just want to help shape digitization, we also want explain it. Especially events like this one give us the opportunity to exchange ideas with people who might not otherwise engage very much with these issues. This way you can see how technological progress is actually perceived by people in their everyday lives. This is important, because it is often given short shrift in the political discourse.”
Impressions of the iRights.Lab at the #nurmiteuch Festival can be seen in our FLICKR gallery.
Information on the partner project with the BMJV, “Anna — Das vernetzte Leben” can be found here.