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Personal Identity and the Brazilian Public Key Infrastructure

Date & Time:
16:00:00 - 17:30:00,
Wednesday 1 April, 2009


This seminar will portray the impressive ongoing developments in the so called Brazilian Public Key Infrastructure (ICP-Brasil): the regulatory and technological framework that lends legal validity to the presentation of personal attributes and manifestations of will in the Brazilian information environment.

Legally instituted in 2001, ICP-Brasil conjoins the federal executive, legislative and judiciary branches of Brazil, as well as the market and members of the civil society in a unique model where the public and the private are intermingled in defining the legal and technological boundaries for the assertion and recognition of personhood and personal identity in Brazil.

With more than 10 million digital certificates issued in the last two years only, around 150 registration authorities with a vast network of sites spread all across the country, a range of uses that spans from legal petitioning before higher and state courts to funds transfers in the Brazilian payments system, ICP-Brasil now prepares itself for further steps as Brazil sets out to issue a new e-Identity card for every single Brazilian citizen.

Due to Brazil’s quasi-continental dimensions and overall geopolitical position, the repercussions of a project of such magnitude promise to be very significant. Brazil’s leadership in these matters amongst Mercosul countries has already been reflected in new joint regulatory landmarks and is likely to reach a pan-American dimension. This seminar will focus on the foreseeable repercussions of such fast-growing framework for possibilities of legal and political action of Brazilian individuals as bearers of rights and duties; as persons, in this legal and political sense.

BSP/OII Seminar Series

This seminar is part of a series organised by the Brazilian Studies Programme and the OII, convened by Dr Timothy Power (Brazilian Studies Programme) and Marcelo Thompson (OII). The series is aimed at understanding the ways in which the use of the Internet and related technologies is changing the cultural, political and otherwise social landscape in 21st Century Brazilian Society.

The first set of two seminars to be given at the OII by distinguished Brazilian officials and scholars will focus on the theme of ‘Internet and Personhood in Brazil’ – that is, on the transformations that Brazilian society is experiencing in different dimensions of its very understanding of human personhood.

This seminar is part of a series organised with the Brazilian Studies Programme at the University of Oxford.

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  • Dr Marcelo Thompson
  • Name: Dr Marcelo Thompson|Mauricio Coelho|Dr Renato Martini|Dr Timothy Power
  • Affiliation: Oxford Internet Institute|Public Key Infrastructure Director, Brazilian Information Technology
    Institute|President-Director, Brazilian Information Technology
    Institute|Brazilian Studies Programme
  • Role: Series Convenor|||Series Convenor
  • URL:|||
  • Bio: |Maurício Augusto Coelho is Director of the Public Key Infrastructure Division of the National Information Technology Institute – ITI, an executive agency linked to the Office of the President of Brazil and responsible for the management and operation of the Root Certification Authority of the Brazilian PKI (ICP-Brasil). Federal Civil Servant since 1998, Maurício has long since been involved in public administration modernization, leading the design, development and implementation of e-government programs and projects at the Office of the President of Brazil, its organs and agencies, the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Finance. From 1995 to 1997, he worked in the private sector as a systems engineer in the field of Information and Communication Technologies and Industrial and Commercial Automation. Maurício holds a BSc in Production Engineering with emphasis in Electrical Engineering from the Industrial Engineering Faculty – FEI (1991), a PGDip in Public Policy and Governmental Management from the Public Administration National School – ENAP (1999) and an MBA with concentration in E-Government Administration from the University Centre for Managerial Science – UNA (2003). Maurício is married, has three children and lives in Brasília, Brazil.||