On Friday 28 September 2012, IFIP WG 9.2’s paid tribute to the lifelong achievements of Professor Stefano Rodotà of Rome’s La Sapienza University, Italy.
Prof. Rodotà was awarded the eleventh IFIP WG9.2 Namur Award. The award is accorded for an outstanding contribution with international impact to the awareness of social implications of information technology. It is to draw attention to the need for a holistic approach to the use of information technology in which the social implications have been taken into account. Ten earlier awards have been given every two years since 1989.
Prof. Rodotà has a longstanding commitment to a humanistic and holistic view of data protection, data privacy and identity. The award recognises the effects that Prof. Rodotà’s studies, teaching, public speaking and writing, and political and policy activities have had in Europe and internationally on legal and ethical approaches to data protection and privacy.
There remain, however, many dilemmas – including identity – that affect human beings in a digital world. Prof. Rodotà’s award speech on “Identity between Web 2.0 and Web 3.0” outlined the challenges of knowing what is an identity in today’s fragmented digital society in such domains as law, philosophy, sociology and technology.
The award has mostly been given in the Belgian city of Namur, the birthplace of the concept of the award. However, this year it was decided to integrate it in the HCC10 conference. Greetings from Namur were brought by Ms Laurence Masclet, Namur University, on behalf of Namur Award Committee chair, Prof. Philippe Goujon. Some forty attendees to the ceremony included TC9 chair, Dr Jackie Phahlahomohlaka, CSIR, South Africa and several TC9 national computing society country representatives. The chairs of IFIP WG 9.7 Martin Warnke of Leuphana University, Germany, WG9.9 Magda Hercheui of Westminster Business School, UK and SIG 9.2.2 Penny Duquenoy of Middlesex University, UK, were all present. The award and certificate themselves were given to Prof. Rodotà by WG 9.2 chair, Ms Diane Whitehouse.
The Italian press has reported on the award, story available here.