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CITP Seminar: Frederik Zuiderveen Borgesius – Digital Discrimination and the Law in Europe

Tuesday, May 9, 2023
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm


306 Sherrerd Hall
Photo Zuiderveen Borgesius, Frederik

Video available here.

Organizations can use computers or AI to make decisions about people: digital differentiation. For example, insurers can adjust prices to consumers, and the government can use AI-driven analysis to combat welfare fraud. Such digital differentiation is often useful and efficient, but it also brings discrimination-related risks. First, there is a risk of discrimination against people with a certain ethnicity, gender, or similar characteristics. Second, there is a risk of other unfair differentiation that does not specifically affect people with a particular ethnicity or similar characteristic, but is still unfair. For example, digital differentiation can reinforce economic inequality. The presentation introduces the main applicable rules in Europe, such as non-discrimination law and in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The presentation also shows that those rules, while useful, leave serious gaps.


Frederik Zuiderveen Borgesius is a professor of ICT and law. He works at the iHub, part of Radboud University in The Netherlands. The iHub is the interdisciplinary research hub on digitalization and society. Zuiderveen Borgesius is a law professor, but teaches at the computer science department. His research mostly concerns fundamental rights, such as the right to privacy and non-discrimination rights, in the context of new technologies. He often enriches legal research with insights from other disciplines. He has co-operated with, economists, computer scientists, and communication scholars. He has given expert testimony to policymakers, at the Dutch and the European parliaments, and committees of the Council of Europe and the United Nations.

To request accommodations for a disability please contact Jean Butcher, , at least one week prior to the event.