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Digitalization and Networked Security

The research group studies networked security as an essential component of (digital) public services in order to detect cascading emergencies at an early stage, to keep people informed in an optimal and trustworthy way and to indicate options for action. It focuses in particular on the analysis of uncertainties and the handling of non-knowledge in the use of digital technologies in the context of warnings.

The research group focuses on socio-technical systems that are critical to safety and security. This includes digital (e.g. failure-critical, AI-controlled) infrastructures, technological solutions (conformity with security, data protection and ethics, robustness/resilience) as well as users such as authorities and organizations with security tasks and the public (physical security, IT security, civil security, privacy, informational self-determination).

Addressing future risks will change as a result of various current transformation processes (e.g. adaptation to climate change, digitalization of the public, BOS and the economy). In this context, safety and security are increasingly seen as continuously existing social challenges. The paradigm shift from classic hazard management to risk management seems to be inevitably dependent on digitization. Artificial intelligence, machine learning and social media are already changing the possibilities for data analysis, governance and knowledge management. In the process, actors make use of a wide variety of practices and tools to draw situation pictures of acute hazard events, provide information about expected futures, and derive conclusions for their preparation for potential events. Who is potentially affected? What damage would be possible? What dimensions could an event assume? In concrete terms, this leads to the following questions:

  • What techniques and processes are needed to detect cascading emergencies in critical infrastructures at an early stage and to react accordingly?
  • Which digital functions and platforms are needed for the deployment of civil protection forces?
  • How can interaction and communication with the public succeed in the event of a crisis or catastrophic event and the possible failure of critical infrastructures?

The intended research is mainly based on empirical studies, especially surveys, (expert) interviews and experiments with users of warnings as well as the analysis of collected data.