The work of the 21 research groups was supplemented by thematic groups with a cross-sectional character. The cross-sectional formats dealt with overarching questions of ethics and political shaping of the relationship between technology and society.
The cross-sectional formats pursued two main objectives. First, they brought together research results and prepared them for overarching ethical and political questions. The aim was to provide expert opinions on the major design issues with regard to the relationship between society and digital technology.
Secondly, innovative and risky ideas and impulses for the further development of the research agenda of the Weizenbaum-Institut were developed. In doing so, the cross-sectional formats should remain a living instrument. Accordingly, their questions (and also their number) were adapted to the development of the Weizenbaum-Institute.