Scientific Coordination and Moderation of the “Platform Privacy” (PlattformPrivat)

Digitalization is taking place in all economic, administrative and other areas of society. It and its comprehensive global networking require and bring about profound and sustainable transformations in all these areas and change the lives of individuals and societies. In particular, it has an impact on the realization of normative development goals such as privacy as well as individual and collective self-determination. These impacts can affect both the realization of these goals in the context of social coexistence and the understanding of these goals as normative values. Measured against today's shared understanding, digitalization and global networking can promote and develop privacy, self-determination and democracy, but can also have the opposite effect and contribute to impairing or eliminating them. Digitalization and global networking create new needs for protection, but also for the critical redefinition of privacy, self-determination and democracy between individual and social expectations as well as economic opportunities. Identifying and evaluating the effects of digitalization at an early stage and shaping them in such a way that privacy, self-determination and democracy benefit from digitalization is a high research priority.

Previously, such efforts were undertaken by the Forum Privacy and Self-Determined Life in the Digital World, in which eight research institutions worked together from 2014 to 2021. Based on technical, legal, economic, humanities and social science approaches, the Privacy Forum developed an interdisciplinary, contemporary understanding of the role of privacy. Following on from this, concepts were developed to (re)define and guarantee informational self-determination and privacy in the digital world. It acted as a platform for professional exchange and developed orientation knowledge for public discourse in the form of scientific publications, conferences, white and policy papers.

With the high-tech strategy of the German federal government from August 2014 and the research framework program on IT security for the years 2015-2020, “privacy and data protection” became a focus of funding for the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). In 2021, BMBF funding was further intensified and bundled under the umbrella of a “Platform Privacy”. Since April 2021, the previous tasks of the “Forum Privacy” with regard to internal scientific exchange, science communication and as an expert group that comments on current issues of data protection and privacy have been taken over by a scientific coordination in the sense of project or program support.

The “Platform Privacy” bundles the research projects funded by the BMBF in the field of privacy and digitalization, especially those with an interdisciplinary approach. The basic framework conditions for these projects (such as cooperation with scientific coordination) are defined in a framework announcement (

Project partner is the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, Karlsruhe.

Further information can be found on the Platform Privacy website.

Project information

Federal Ministry of Education and Research

April 2021 - March 2025

Project leader:
Prof. Dr. Alexander Roßnagel
Prof. Dr. Gerrit Hornung, LL.M.

Priv.-Doz. Dr. Christian Geminn