Innovation & Sustainability Event

About Data About Us

Workshop, 20.02.2020

Please join us for a workshop on the topic of data rights. The Open Data Institute and the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce will first present their research project on data rights in the UK, followed by a response from Adriana Groh, Director Prototype Fund at the Open Knowledge Foundation. Together we shall then look to understand the wider public debate on data rights in Germany and locate any research or engagement gaps, to then assess potential areas of collaboration.

Purpose of the workshop

The specific purpose of this workshop will be to encourage those who attend – from the political, practitioner, civic and public spaces – to consider similar questions we posed to the public in the UK, to immerse themselves in the project’s key findings and to think about how their own research and experience of the data movements on the ground tallies or differs from the findings. Participants will be encouraged to think about how we collectively might partner to take this agenda forward.


Workshop with:

  • Adriana Groh, Director Prototype Fund, Open Knowledge Foundation
  • Lutz Mache, Public Policy and Government Relations Manager, Google
  • Renate Samson, Senior Policy Advisor, The Open Data Institute
  • Asheem Singh, Director of Economy, RSA


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The integral role of data in our lives

Never before has data played such an integral role in how we live. On a daily basis, we are asked to make decisions about personal data about us. We are only just starting to grasp the impact that these decisions have on us, and others. Therefore we must think differently about data and the rights and responsibilities around it. We must engage with and listen to people about how they feel.

This is what The RSA, The Open Data Institute and Luminate did in conducting a research project on data rights. It questioned a small selection of the UK public on how they feel about data about them, and how we can find ways to talk about data that everyone can understand and engage with. People have told us they want

greater honesty and transparency, agency and control, compliance and enforceability, rights and responsibility, context and fairness over how data about them is used.


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Start an international grass-roots movement

Now we want to bring decision-makers, activists, and citizen engagement groups together to tell us what they think data is and what opportunities there are for extending and embedding further rights and responsibilities rather than ownership models. We also want to scope the possibility of expanding this work across Europe – and so beginning to drive a genuine, international grass-roots movement for change that may form the basis of future work. The workshop in Berlin is the starting point of this process.

The possibilities, as you will know, are considerable. By sharing data across society, we can collectively provide better public services, save money and gain greater insight. But with this opportunity comes risks. With private and public organisations knowing more about us than ever before and the potential for data to leak and privacy to be compromised.

So how can the government use our data ethically? What lessons can the government and the private sector learn from one another? What should citizens and consumers expect? Where should the line be drawn on personal privacy? These are the questions we posed to citizens and will pose to you within the workshop.




Supported by


Florian Ranft

Magdalena Pichler

Event Date

20/02/2020, 9.00-11.30 am


Telefonica, Digital Lounge (4th floor), Unter den Linden 26, 10117 Berlin