Connected Communities Initiative Conferences and Workshops

The Connected Communities Initiative hosts workshops and symposia on a variety of topics ranging from social and ethical issues surrounding privacy and surveillance to the social, political and economic impacts of data ownership.

Who Owns the Data?

Building on successful conferences hosted at CITRIS, such as “Can Open Data Improve Democratic Governance?” (September 2013), CITRIS co-hosted “Who Owns the Data?: An International Conference on Digital Assets, Data Philanthropy, and Public Benefit” in collaboration with Inria and EIT ICT Labs in May 2015.

“Who Owns the Data?” brought together data scientists, elected officials, representatives of public agencies and advocacy organizations, and entrepreneurs from the United States and Europe to discuss the social, political, and economic impacts of big data collection. Panel topics included privacy and transparency of big data collection and use, models of ownership and stewardship of public and private big data, and  data philanthropy and corporate social responsibility.

Keynote speakers included Brewster Kahle, Founder and Digital Librarian at The Internet Archive and Francisco Garcia Moran, Chief IT Advisor for the European Commission.

The “Who Owns the Data?” event can be viewed at

Ethics and Governance Executive Seminar Series: E-government, Transparency and Democracy Panel

The Ethics and Governance Executive Seminar Series is a two-week program hosted by the Goldman School of Public Policy for Indian administrative officers. As part of this program, the Connected Communities Initiative held a panel on e-government, transparency and democracy in late June.

The panel examined the implications of new technology on democracy and civic engagement and the intended and unintended effects on elected officials, public agencies, and the constituencies they serve.

Panelists included Munyema Hasan from the Open Government Partnership, Jonathan Reichental from the City of Palo Alto, and Brandie Nonnecke from the CITRIS Connected Communities Initiative. The panel was moderated by Camille Crittenden.  

More information on the Goldman School of Public Policy’s Executive Seminar Series is available at

Pan-Optics: Emerging Perspectives on Visual Privacy and Surveillance

The Pan-Optics symposium highlighted emerging perspectives on visual privacy and considered the state of the art from a variety of disciplines and professions, including technology, journalism, filmmaking and the arts.

Keynote speakers included Rebecca MacKinnon, Senior Research Fellow, New America Foundation and Trevor Paglen, Artist & Social Scientist.

The “Pan-Optics” event can be viewed at