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The Structure of the Report 'A Vision on Ambient Law (AmL)' D7.9  Title:
 Annex II: Slides of the presentations


Participants to the Workshop


Ammar Alkassar                    Sirrix

Claudia Diaz                        KUL - COSIC

Serge Gutwith                     VUB

Mireille Hildebrandt                    VUB

Bert-Jaap Koops                    TILT

Eleni Kosta                        KUL - ICRI

Martin Meints                        ICCP

Anna Moscibroda                    VUB

Ronny Saelens                    VUB

Wim Schreurs                        VUB





(Disseminated 26th January 2007 to the contributors)



VUB (1,5), Mireille Hildebrandt, Serge Gutwirth, Ronny Saelens, Anna Moscibroda 

TILT (1), Bert-Jaap Koops 

KUL - ICRI (0.5), Eleni Kosta 

KUL – COSIC, Claudia Diaz 

ICPP (0.5), Martin Meints 

ICCS (0.5)  

Reading (0.5)  

Sirrix (0.5) - Ammar Alkassar 


Conference Room: M.420 

Campus VUB Etterbeek 

Pleinlaan 2, 105 Brussels - Etterbeek 


After being refreshed with coffee VUB and TILT will take the lead on what Ambient Law (AmL) means, what should be its object and how it can achieve this. This will include a discussion of the relationship between law and technology, especially regarding the impotence of present-day administrative law to adequately regulate profiling.  


After another coffee 4 parts or elements of AmL will be discussed (see below). This discussion will benefit from cross-disciplinary introductions. We invite all participants to prepare presentations on this, or at least contributions to a brain storm. To appetize you, we have attached provisional names to these subjects, please do not hesitate to change your contributions. We need unconventional but rigorous brains here! 


At 16.00 we will discuss the structure of the report and the distribution of tasks, closing the meeting at 17.00. 


9.15: Coffee and registration


9.30: Introduction to Ambient Law

(Mireille Hildebrandt, VUB) 


10.00: Regulating Technologies

(Bert-Jaap Koops, TILT) 


10.30: coffee 


11.00: I Technological embodiment of mandatory data-protection legislation

Assessment of the relevant norms: ICRI, VUB, TILT  

Technological implementation: ICPP, Sirrix, VIP,  


12.00: II Technological transparency tools to detect the types of profiles that may be applied

Assessment of necessary legal norms (not yet part of positive law): VUB, TILT 

Technological articulation: COSIC, Sirrix, ICPP, Reading  


13.00: lunch


14.00: III Machine to machine (M2M) communication to negotiate with the service provider about the level of anonymity and unlinkability

Assessment of relevant legal norms: ICRI, VUB, TILT 

Technological instrumentation: Reading, COSIC, Sirrix, VIP 


15.00: IV Machine to machine (M2M) communication to negotiate about the application of profiles predefined by the (potential) client

Assessment of relevant legal norms (positive law and necessary legal norms): VUB, TILT  

Technological embodiment: Reading, COSIC, Sirrix, ICPP  


16.00: Structure of the report and division of tasks


17.00: End of the meeting

The actual program was adapted to accommodate emerging issues. The focus was (1) on the technological embodiment of existing legislation in the field of data protection (data minimisation and partial identities like pseudonyms, history management, privacy-preserving data mining PPDM)) and (2) on the need to envision new legislative and technological tools to counterbalance the unequal access to the knowledge contained in profiles.

It remained unclear/contested to what extent Ambient Intelligence can work in the case of data minimisation: does this necessarily make the environment less intelligent? For this reason, 3 scenarios were considered to be of utmost importance:

  1. scenario 1 is user-centric: the user is empowered in AmI, carrying a device with which to control the environment, for example, by determining which data can be exchanged between user and environment. This may be a ‘privacy-friendly’ and commercial doom scenario (?).  Key concepts are ‘data minimisation’, ‘contextual integrity’, ‘partial identities’ (pseudonyms).

  2. scenario 2 is provider-centric: AmI is controlled by the providers of services (and goods, if there still are goods by then). The environment knows exactly who is where and will interact without consent, and perhaps without knowledge, of the user. Data flows freely between users and their devices, service providers, and perhaps third parties as well. This may be a ‘user-friendly’ and commercial Walhalla scenario. Key concepts are ‘data optimisation’, ‘networked environment’ and ‘distributed intelligence’ (the intelligence flows from the interconnectivity). 

  3. scenario 3 is a mix: in acknowledging that hiding data can make the environment less intelligent, while unlimited access to data can make individual citizens vulnerable to undesirable profiling, this scenario aims to achieve some kind of balance by minimising knowledge asymmetry. 

The technical partners Reading, ICCS and SIRRIX should be able to provide relevant scenarios, possibly inspired by the scenarios already developed by SWAMI.

As indicated above it was agreed that ICPP – together with SIRRIX – will develop an overview of the state of the art of technological devices, mostly privacy-enhancing technologies (PET). As discussed in D7.7, contemporary PETs are all focused on personal data, leaving important lacunae in the case that these data are anonymised and having no regard whatsoever for the knowledge that is built and used on the basis of such data (profiles emerging in the process of KDD, using techniques like clustering and association rules).

The legal scholars at ICRI, TILT and VUB will look into the possibility to develop legal transparency tools as regards profiles that may impact our behaviour without our awareness. In terms of access to these profiles, the problem may be (1) that they have not been constructed out of one’s personal data (but out of other personal or anonymised data), thus rendering data protection legislation inapplicable and

TILT and VUB will assess to what extent existing legal and technological tools achieve something like AmL, taking into account the checks and balances warranted in a constitutional democracy that incorporates the rule of law.  




The Structure of the Report 'A Vision on Ambient Law (AmL)' D7.9  fidis-wp7-del7.8.workshop_ambient_law_02.sxw  Annex II: Slides of the presentations
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