Today I received the good news that the Scientific Committee of the Amsterdam Privacy Conference 2015 has accepted our panel ‘Privacy, Data Protection, and Ethics of Automation and Identification in Border Control’.

The Amsterdam Privacy Conference 2015 brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers, and professionals in the field of privacy to share insights, exchange ideas and formulate, discuss and answer the challenging privacy questions that lie ahead of us. The APC conferences are fully interdisciplinary and aim at societal relevance by building bridges between academics, regulators, civil society and companies and between different countries and continents. APC 2015 provides general and inspiring plenary sessions, aimed at an international and interdisciplinary public, and small scale and interactive parallel sessions, with an average number of 20 to 30 participants, which allows for in-depth discussions among peers. Have a look at the conference programme and register for what promises to be a really interesting event.

Our own panel will examine privacy challenges related to the use of new technologies in border control, emphasising the European experience and current context. In discussing the varied viewpoints of stakeholders in the field (e.g. authorities, civil society, travellers), the panel will touch upon how the particular context of border control (where issues of national security, human rights and freedoms, and other ethical norms and governance become particularly important) impacts the prioritisation of data protection and privacy issues. Much research and policy debates on border control regimes focuses on the issue of irregular migration. This panel will look at how technological developments in border control impact all border crossers – whether irregularly crossing, or “legitimate”. The panel participants are: Huub Dijstelbloem (University of Amsterdam), Diana Dimitrova (University of Leuven), Maegan Hendow (ICMPD),  Irma van der Ploeg and Sanneke Kloppenburg (Maastricht University), Franziska Boehm (University of Luxembourg), and Anne-Marie Oostveen (University of Oxford).

Oudemanhuispoort, Universiteit van Amsterdam

Oudemanhuispoort, Universiteit van Amsterdam

It will be very enjoyable to be back at my old university for a couple of days and to have the opportunity to show my (non-Dutch) colleagues the most amazing places to hang out. After all, Amsterdam is the best city in the world!