Wagner Ben

Ben Wagner (Lab Director)

Accountable Systems, Human-Centric Computing & Technology Governance
Dr. Ben Wagner is an Assistant Professor and Director of the Privacy & Sustainable Computing Lab at Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU Wien), where his research focuses on technology policy, human rights and accountable information systems. He is an Associate Faculty member at the Complexity Science Hub Vienna, a visiting researcher at the Human Centred Computing Group at the University of Oxford and a member of the Advisory Group of the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA). He previously worked at the Technical University of Berlin, Cambridge University, the University of Pennsylvania and European University Viadrina. He holds a PhD in Political and Social Sciences from European University Institute in Florence.

Sabrina Kirrane (Management Board)

Semantic Technology, Data Analytics & Privacy

Dr. Sabrina Kirrane joined the WU as a postdoctoral researcher in September 2015 and was the Founding Director of the Privacy & Sustainable Computing Lab. Prior to taking up the position at WU she was a researcher at the Insight Centre for Data Analytics, Ireland. Her PhD focused on the problem of access control for the Web of Data. Before that she spent several years working in Industry on topics around data integration and security, such as system security requirements their and implementation in an application service provider environment. Sabrina’s research focuses on the privacy issues that can result from interlinked machine-readable data. Dr. Kirrane is a guest editor for the Journal of Web Semantics special issue on Security, Privacy and Policy for the Semantic Web and Linked Data and besides others organiser of the PrivOn workshop series on Society, Privacy and the Semantic Web - Policy and Technology.

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Sarah Spiekermann (Founder and Management Board)

Ethical System Design, Privacy, Behavior & Philosophy

Univ.Prof. Dr. Sarah Spiekermann is a professor for Business Informatics since 2009 and chairs the IMIS. Her main areas of expertise are electronic privacy, RFID, personalization/CRM, attention and interruption management (notification platforms) and context-adaptivity. She has been advising the EU Commission in the area of privacy for RFID since 2005, served as a reviewer of RFID FP7 projects SMART and BRIDGE, co-authored and negotiated the PIA-Framework for RFID (signed in April 2011 by the EU Commission) and developed the PIA guidelines for privacy-friendly RFID systems for the German Federal Institute of Information Security (BSI) (published in November 2011).

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Axel Polleres (Founder and Management Board)

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Axel Polleres joined the WU in September 2013. Before he worked at TU Vienna, Univ. Innsbruck, Univ. Rey Juan Carlos (Madrid, Spain), the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) at NUI Galway (Ireland), and for Siemens AG. His research focuses on ontologies, query and rules languages, Semantic Web technologies (particularly scalable semantic data management), Web services, knowledge management, Linked Open Data, configuration technologies and their applications. Axel has published more than 100 scientific articles and actively contributed to international standardisation efforts within the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) where he co-chaired the W3C SPARQL working group.

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Sushant Agarwal

Privacy Risk & Compliance

Sushant Agarwal joined the WU as a project staff in Apr 2014. He finished his Bachelors and Masters Degree in Aerospace from IITB, India. During his studies, he worked on projects related to data quality management and failure diagnosis for Boeing and Hitachi at DIAL LAB-University of Cambridge, UK. Working on projects involving big datasets and machine learning led to his interest in privacy and ethics. Currently, his research focusses on privacy risk and compliance. He is also working on the SERAMIS project where he is involved in exploring the questions related to privacy in pervasive computing.

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Kathrin Bednar

Human Wellbeing, Ethics & IT

Kathrin Bednar is a teaching and research associate at the Institute for Management Information Systems at WU Vienna. She has a background in Psychology, Philosophy and Cognitive Science and has been teaching classes on human-centered design and sustainable IT. Her general research interests focus on the impact of technology on our lives and psychological wellbeing, a challenging topic considering an environment dominated by new technologies and media. Currently, Kathrin is looking into ethical IT design & innovation and technology attitudes.

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Florian Cech (Visiting Member 2019)

Algorithmic Accountability & Transparency

Florian Cech is a research scientist and PhD candidate at the Centre for Informatics and Society (C!S) at TU Wien. His research is focused on aspects of the digital transformation related to algorithmic accountability, transparency and user interface design, and he teaches classes on Critical Algorithm Studies. He is also working as a software engineer, developing sustainability management and energy accounting tools with the European Energy Awards (EEA) program.

Olha Drozd

Privacy by Design: Privacy Patterns

Olha Drozd is a teaching and research associate currently working on the Online Interactive Privacy Pattern Catalog. Before joining the institute for Management Information Systems at the WU she worked as a research assistant at the Institute of Information Systems at the Humboldt University of Berlin. Olha also worked as an IT project manager at DDM Studio- a digital production studio located in Kyiv, Ukraine. She managed digital production teams for such brands as Fox TV (US), Sesame Street, Chevrolet, Swisscom, AirFrance-KLM, Saatchi & Saatchi, Sanofi-Aventis, and others.  Olha's research interests focus on privacy by design and privacy patterns.

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Javier Fernández

Management, Compression and Encryption of Semantic Data

Dr. Javier D. Fernández is a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for Information Business at the Vienna University of   Economics and Business (WU Wien), where he employed under a Lise Meitner grant that is funded by the FWF Austrian Science Fund. He holds a joint Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Valladolid (Spain) and the University of Chile (Chile), performing this double diploma thanks to an Erasmus Mundus grant. Before he joined the WU, he worked at the  Ontology Engineering Group (OEG) at Universidad Politecnica de Madrid (Spain), and the Dipartimento di Ingegneria Informatica Automatica e Gestionale at Sapienza Universit a di Roma (Italy).

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Christian Göbel

Digital Technology, Demonstrations, Social Credit System

Prof. Dr. Christian Göbel joined the Lab in December 2017. He is a University Professor of Modern China Studies at the University of Vienna, Department of East Asian Studies. A political scientist and sinologist by training, his research is concerned with the adaptability of the Chinese Party-State to social, economic and political challenges. He is especially interested in effects of digital technology on local governance in China. Data derived from expert interviews, expert surveys and web harvesting is processed by means of qualitative content analysis, text statistical methods and inferential statistics.

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Esther Görnemann

Transparency & Psychological Data Ownership

Esther Görnemann joined the team at the Institute for Management Information Systems in August 2016 as a project related research associate for the EU project “Privacy and Usability”.  In her research, she focusses on transparency and psychological data ownership and related fields such as the perception of risk and data governance. She has a Master in Business Management and a Master in International Marketing. Data markets, user's data sharing behavior and risk awareness were main focuses during her studies. Prior to working at the Institute, Esther worked as Management Consultant for KPMG in Finance and IT Advisory and several years in Marketing, PR and Customer Relationship Management in the Solar Industry.

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Aniko Hannak

Algorithmic Auditing, Computational Social Science

Aniko has been assistant professor at the Vienna University of Economics and Business, and faculty member of the Complexity Science Hub since September 2018. She received her PhD from the College of Computer & Information Science at Northeastern University, where she was part of the Lazer Lab and the Algorithmic Auditing Group.

Aniko’s main interest lies in computational social sciences. She is focusing on the co-evolution of online systems and their users. Broadly, her work investigates a variety of content serving websites such as search engines, online stores, job search sites, or freelance marketplaces. In this quickly changing online ecosystem, companies track every move of their users and feed the collected data into Big Data algorithms in order to match them with the most interesting, most relevant content. Since these algorithms learn on human data they are likely to pick up on social biases and unintentionally reinforce them. In her PhD work, Aniko created a methodology called “algorithmic auditing”, which tries to uncover the potential negative impacts of large online systems. Examples of such audits include examining the filter bubble effect on GoogleSearch, online price discrimination or detecting inequalities in online labor markets.

Soheil Human

Artificial Intelligence, Cognitive Science, Science-Technology-Society (STS), Accountable Computing

Soheil Human has  an interdisciplinary background in Artificial Intelligence, Cognitive Science, History and Philosophy of Science and Science-Technology-Society (STS). Currently, he is a lecturer and research associate at the Department of Information Systems and Operations of the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU Wien) and a lecturer at the Department of Philosophy of the University of Vienna. His current research focus is on human needs, personal data processing and accountable computing. Soheil applies a wide range of theories and methods from Philosophy, Cognitive & Information Economics, Conceptual & Computational Cognitive Modelling, Artificial Intelligence, and Semantic Web in his research. His other research interests involve human values, pluralism & epistemic disagreements, predictive processing, sociotechnical imaginaries and cognitive information economies.

Bernadette Kamleitner

Privacy and Data Ownership, Psychological Implications of Smart Technologies

Univ.Prof. Dr.Dr. Bernadette Kamleitner joined WU as a professor for Marketing with a special focus on Consumer Behavior in 2012. She is head of the Institute for Marketing and Consumer Research and has a background in both business and psychology. Her research focuses on the psychological underpinnings of consumer behaviors, including the way consumers perceive and deal with personal data and an increasing digitization of everyday phenomena. In particular, she is an internationally recognized expert on perceptions of ownership on which she has published and spoken in numerous internationally renowned fora.

Matthias C. Kettemann

Internet Law, Online Rule-Making, Human Rights in Digitality, Internet Governance

PD Mag. Dr. Matthias C. Kettemann, LL.M. (Harvard), joined as an associate researcher in 2019. Matthias is Head of the Research Program Regulatory Structures and the Emergence of Rules in Online Spaces at the Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI), Hamburg and Chair ad interim for Public Law, International Law and Human Rights - Hengstberger Professor for the Foundations and Future of the Rule of Law, University of Heidelberg. At the Lab, he runs a multidisciplinary research project with Ben Wagner conducting freedom of expression governance analytics on user comment datasets of newspapers and information exchange sites. He studied international and Internet law in Graz, Geneva and Harvard Law School and completed his postdoctoral work at the Cluster of Excellence “The Emergence of Normative Orders” at Goethe University Frankfurt am Main. Matthias has provided expertise for the German Bundestag, several DAX companies, foundations and international organizations, on Internet regulation, cybersecurity and human rights.

Niklas Kirchner

Personal Data Ecosystems, Political Theory, Privacy and Philosophy

Niklas Kirchner joins the Institute of Information Systems and New Media as a scientific project employee for the EXPEDiTE project, investigating the impact of the new GDPR regulatory framework on the emergence of "human-centered" personal data ecosystems. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and Economics from the University of Bayreuth and is currently enrolled in the Philosophy masters program at the University of Vienna (with support of a graduate stipend by the DAAD). He is focusing on interdisciplinary matters in practical philosophy, especially in Political Theory and Social Philosophy as well as Ethics and Philosophy of Economics. Previous professional affiliations include Media Consultancy, Medical Health as well as Human Rights.

Jana Korunovska

Privacy Notices & User Issues

Jana Korunovska is a research and teaching associate currently working on the impact of privacy notices on user’s privacy concerns and online behavior. As a psychologist, her research often focuses on user-related issues, most prominently privacy and ownership issues of personal data on the internet, especially in the social networking context. For this work, together with Prof. Dr. Sarah Spiekermann and Dr. Christine Bauer she won the CPDP 2013 Multidisciplinary Privacy Research Award. Her other research interests involve the impact of new media and technology on the affective, cognitive, and conative aspects of the end-users.

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Paola Lopez (Visiting 2019 - 2020)

Algorithmic Governance, Equal Treatment Law, STS

Paola Lopez is a mathematician, and she is working on an interdisciplinary PhD thesis at the Faculty of Law at the University of Vienna where she investigates automated decision-making systems and predictive analytics. Her focus lies on the epistemic limits of these systems, as well as on their equal treatment and democracy-political implications when used in governance constellations. She teaches disciplinary Mathematics classes, as well as interdisciplinary Algorithmic Bias classes.

Alexander Novotny

Cyber-Security, Risk & Technology in Society

Dr. Alexander Novotny, MSc is an information privacy and security specialist. He is an information security manager addressing cyber risks in the utilities industry. Moreover, Alexander is a lecturer at the Vienna University of Economics and Business. He has been teaching lectures on information privacy and security, IoT security, ethical computing, and information and communication technology.

Alexander is a certified CIS information security manager according to ISO 27001 and a certified risk manager for information security according to ISO 27005. Also, he is a certified and BSI-registered auditor for the IT-security of critical infrastructures according to § 8a (3) BSIG of the German IT-security law ("IT-Sicherheitsgesetz"). Alexander is a member of the IEEE P7000 engineering methodologies for ethical life-cycle concerns working group. Moreover, he has been serving as a standardization expert for digital marketing and privacy at the Austrian Standards Institute.

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Eliška Pírková

Online hate speech, surveillance and security, freedom of expression 

Eliška Pírková is a doctoral researcher at the University of Helsinki, faculty of law. Currently, she works for the Laws of Surveillance and Security (LOSS) Project that is funded by the Academy of Finland. Her doctoral thesis concerns the phenomenon of online hate speech and the protection of freedom expression in digital age. Her main area of research interest is the protection of human rights in online space, European constitutionalism and Internet governance. Eliška has experience with working for both, international organisations and NGO sector. She regularly lectures on various human right topics and has served as the main editor of human rights section in the Finnish Yearbook of International Law.


Juan Quintero

Privacy by design, usability, user acceptance of connected cars  

Juan is a researcher at Uniscon GmbH and Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen (FAU, Germany), within the Privacy & Us-project (Marie Skłodowska-Curie, Horizon 2020). His research focuses on the privacy, usability, and user acceptance of connected cars, considering as scenario: Usage-Based Auto Insurance. Since 2006 Juan has been working with many different software companies applying different software processes and methodologies. At the same time, He has been researching in Digital Signature, Privacy, Dynamic Binary Instrumentation, Steganography, and Big Data. Juan holds a Master degree in Computer Science and Information Security from Industrial University of Santander, Colombia.


Krisztina Rozgonyi (Visiting 2019 - 2020)

Media Governance, IP regulation and communications policy

Dr. Rozgonyi is an Assistant Professor with the Media Governance and Media Industries Research Lab at the Department of Communication of the University of Vienna. Dr. Rozgonyi works with international and European organizations (such as ITU/UN, UNESCO, Council of Europe, European Commission, World Bank InfoDev, OSCE and BBC MA), with national governments, regulators, and companies as senior adviser on media freedom, spectrum policy and copyright legal frameworks re: digital audiovisual archives.

She has worked for the governments of Serbia, Rwanda, Thailand, United Arab Emirates as well as for international organizations in the Ukraine, Macedonia, Israel, Poland, FYROM, Albania and Egypt. Between 2004-2010 she served as the Chairperson (Deputy Chairperson) of the Telecoms Authority in Hungary. Dr. Rozgonyi’s expertise lies in media and telecommunications policy-making and regulation with extensive experience in legal drafting, legal analysis and legal reform work. She holds a PhD in Communication Sciences (University of Vienna); a Doctor Juris in Law and State Sciences (Eötvös Lóránd University, Faculty of Law, Budapest); an MA in Communication Sciences (Eötvös Lóránd University, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Budapest); and an MBA (Central European University).


Markus Sabadello (Visiting Member 2018 - 2019)

Politics and Technologies of Digital Identity

Markus Sabadello has been a pioneer and leader in the field of digital identity for many years and has contributed to cutting-edge technologies that have emerged in this space. He has been an early participant of decentralization movements such as the Federated Social Web, Respect Network, and the FreedomBox. He has worked as an analyst and consultant at the Harvard Berkman Center for Internet&Society, at the MIT Media Lab's Human Dynamics Group, at the World Economic Forum, and at the Personal Data Ecosystem Consortium. Markus has spoken at dozens of conferences and published papers about both the politics and technologies of digital identity. In 2015 he founded Danube Tech, a consulting and development company that contributes to Sovrin Foundation, the Decentralized Identity Foundation, and various self-sovereign identity projects around the world.

Marie-Theres Sekwenz

Law, Artificial Intelligence, Governance

Marie-Theres Sekwenz is a researcher working on law, regulation and governance of artificial intelligence at the privacy and sustainable computing Lab. Before joining the Lab she studied law and economics at WU Vienna and the Graduate School of Management at St Petersburg. She has a range of professional experience from public affairs, to publishing and tax law and compliance as well as a strong artistic background, having worked at the Konzerthaus, a leading cultural institution in Vienna.

Simon Steyskal

Semantic Technology, Web Standards & Licenses

Simon Steyskal holds master’s degrees in Software Engineering & Internet Computing as well as Information & Knowledge Management, both from the Vienna University of Technology (TU) and joined WU in January 2014 as a PhD candidate under the supervision of Prof. Axel Polleres. He is also working as a research scientist for Siemens AG where he is involved in a joint research project between Siemens AG and WU. He is also an active member of the W3C RDF Data Shapes working group and involved in the standardization process of a W3C permissions and obligations expression language carried out by the W3C Permissions & Obligations Expression working group.

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Till Winkler

Ethical System Design

Till Winkler joined the team at Institute for Management Information Systems as a teaching and research associate in June 2016. He completed his bachelor’s and master’s degree in Psychology at the Leopold-Franzens-University Innsbruck. During his studies, he worked as an intern at the Leopold-Franzens-University Innsbruck and the Medical University Innsbruck. His last assignment was at Bartenbach an engineering office for lighting design, were he did research on the usability and psychological impact of daylight installations. His research focuses on the methods of ethical system design.

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