Smart Privacy

Smart Environments with their inherent abundance of sensors lead to a situation where people who are inhabiting and using such environments have less and less control over the data being collected about them. The on-going discussion shows changing views on privacy and the related issues of trust and identity. One has to observe that they are mainly a result of the tricky trade-off for creating smartness. It is becoming more and more obvious that there is an interaction and balance/ trade-off between

  • being able to provide intelligent support based on collecting sensor data and using them for selecting and tailoring functionality to make the system “smart"
  • the right of people to be in control over which data are collected, by whom, how they are used, etc.

There is the danger that we will be moving from a situation where people considered privacy as a legal and moral right (and sometimes a socially negotiated feature) to a situation where it becomes a commodity to be traded or being paid for and thus a privilege for those who can afford it. Thus, it is necessary to provide so-called Privacy Enhancing Technologies (PETs).

So far, the issues of privacy have mainly been discussed in the context of interaction with and usage of web-based information systems as, e.g., social media networks, on-line shopping, etc.. It is time to broaden the perspective and to pay much more attention to the increasing importance of privacy issues in the context of using location-based services, of interacting with smart devices and environments, i.e. of interacting with the ingredients and components constituting
smart hybrid cities.



Norbert Streitz (2017). Reconciling Humans and Technology: The Role of Ambient Intelligence. Keynote Paper. In: A. Braun, R. Wichert, A. Mana (Eds.), Proceedings of the 2017 European Conference on Ambient Intelligence.
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (LNCS 10217
), Springer-Verlag. (pp. 1-16).
(To appear in April 2017)


Norbert Streitz (2016). Smart Cities Need Privacy by Design for Being Humane.
In: Susa Pop, Tanya Toft, Nerea Calvillo, Mark Wright (Eds.),

What Urban Media Art Can Do - Why When Where and How ?
avedition (pp. 268 - 274).

Norbert Streitz (2016). Opportunities and Risks of Digitalization in the Context of Smart Hybrid Cities and Airports. In: Proceedings of USEWARE 2016 - Mensch-Technik-Interaktion im Industrie 4.0 Zeitalter. 8. VDI-VDE Fachtagung. VDI-Berichte 2271. VDI Wissensforum. VDI-Verlag (pp. 5 - 14).

Norbert Streitz (2015).
Citizen-Centered Design for Humane and Sociable Hybrid Cities. (Keynote). In: I. Theona & D. Charitos (Eds.), Hybrid City 2015 - Data to the People. Proc. of the Third International Biannual Conference. University of Athens, Greece. (pp. 17-20).