Hamburg, 16 -17 December 2019

Warburg Haus, Heilwigstr. 116

The workshop addresseschallenges that the digital age poses for democracies. Technicalprogress, such as the rise of industrializationor the rise of new modes of communication such as radio and television, have influenced societies and legal orders in the past centuries. Digitalization represents the most recent major change in the information and communications spheres that societies and legal orders worldwide are facing. Are the challenges the digital era poses for democracy similar to prior technological changes or does digitalization raise entirely new and more troubling challenges for democracy? What are the most appropriate legal and regulatory approaches for dealing with the challenges of the digital era? How arethe internet, artificialintelligence and algorithmschanging democracies and democratic institutions? During the workshop, these challenges will be addressed from nationaland international perspectives and from different disciplines, such as law, history and political science.


Monday, 16 December 2019

2:30 pm          Registration & Coffee

2:45 pm          Welcoming remarks
                         Markus Kotzur, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Law of the University of Hamburg
                         Anne Dienelt, University of Hamburg | University of Bremen

3:00 pm          Keynote:
                          The Communications Revolution and the End of Political Authority
                          Rick Pildes, New York University


4:00pm           Coffee Break

Session 1:       Crisis and Future of Online ‘Publics’:
Normative Perspectives on Whether the Internet Can be Made to Work for Democracy

4:30 pm          Digital Sovereignty: States and Networks in Times of Digitalization
                         Julia Pohle, Berlin Social Science Center

4:50 pm          Towards A Digital Transformation of European Democracy?
                          Justus Vasel, European University Institute

5:10 pm          Can (Quasi) Courts Save Online Publics (and Democracy)?
                         Matthias C. Kettemann, Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institute Hamburg

5:30 pm          Social Media and Their Impact on the “Public”
                         Stefan Oeter, University of Hamburg


Chair: Arne Pilniok, University of Hamburg

7:30pm          Speakers’ Dinner

Tuesday, 17 December 2019

9:00 am          Coffee

Session 2: Technology and Democracy

9:30 am          Is a Digital Democracy Next?
                          Dirk Helbing, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin |ETH Zürich

9:50 am          Democracy and Artificial Intelligence
                          Paul Nemitz, Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers of the European Commission

10:10 am          The Democratic Deficit of Digital Infrastructure
                           Alon Jasper, Tel Aviv University

10:30 am          Artificia lIntelligence and International Law –How is it Challenging the Rule of Law?
                           Thomas Burri, University of St. Gallen


Chair: Hans-Heinrich Trute, University of Hamburg

11:20 am          Concluding remarks

                           Anne Dienelt, University of Hamburg|University of Bremen

11:30 am          Coffee & Franzbrötchen

Please register via email to by Wednesday, 12 December 2019.

The workshop is funded by means of the University of Hamburg’s status as a “University of Excellence”.