Continuous rapid progress in information and communication technologies and the many ways they can be applied open up a wide area of research for TA.
We live in the age of the Information Society. The production and distribution of knowledge has become a significant activity, influencing culture, politics and society. The term is also frequently used to mean social change. The European Union recognises this as well by regarding it as an influential and broad political vision.
The ITA focuses on a variety of key aspects in this field. Currently, we focus on three particularly important topics that are partly interrelated: privacy issues, the use of information technology in public administration, and the impact of networked environments on our lives.
First, we examine the relationship between the ever-changing computerised world and our private sphere. Some technologies are a direct threat to our private lives, for instance surveillance cameras; others only affect it indirectly, for instance mobile phones. Our focus is on reconciling the need to protect privacy for the sake of the development of society with commercial interests and our need for security.
Our second focus is e-governance. Public agencies, from federal ministries to local communities, increasingly use the Internet in order to contact citizens. Often, they simply provide information, but sometimes they even organise participatory events in the digital sphere. We look at how this development changes the public bodies internally and their relationship to society.
Networked environments are our third area of interest: The interlinking of hard- and software, information and people is an essential characteristic of the information society, and the potential and actual impacts need TA's special attention. For instance, social network sites like Facebook or cloud services provide attractive links between people and data, but may also have significant effects on how our societies evolve in terms of personal relationships. Another example is how scientists’ increasingly digital working environments change the way research is done today.
See the following special pages for details of our research:
Selected projects related to Information Society
Visions and values in the shaping of search engines
Augmented Reality in public spaces
How Digital Media and Augmented Reality Change Our Perceptions of Public Spaces
Cloud Computing (STOA-ETAG)
European Perspectives on impacts and potentials of Cloud Computing and Social Network Sites
Credit Scoring in Austria
Austrian Chamber of Labour study examines needs for regulation
Decision Support on Security Investment
The future of labour in the digital era
Ubiquitous Computing, Virtual Platforms, and Real-time Production (EPTA Report)
What if the majority of IT systems in Austria cease to work?
Electronic identity management in Europe
Citizens in Austria, Germany and Spain participate in local climate protection measures to lower CO2 emissions
Motor Vehicles of the Future
Cars full of sensors collect our data. This short report compiles the unfolding questions for consumers.
The use of geodata on mobile devices
Data generated by smartphones or tablets give away more than our location
Pilot Project for the Austrian Parliament
How the internet affects the science-community – ITA-book: Cyberscience 2.0
An overview study with regard to possible surveillance risks
Developing participatory solutions for ethical and legal challenges of new information technologies
Performativity in Software Design
A socio-political approach to practices in software development
Privacy in online games
This short-term study covers data protection issues with regard to online gaming
Robotics in Austria
Brief study on development perspectives and the resulting societal and political challenges
Robotics in Austria
Surveillance, privacy and security: SurPRISE evaluates the acceptance of security technologies among Europe's citizens
The integration of fundamental European values into information and communication technologies for ageing