• Datum 18. November 2014
  • Ort Berlin-Mitte

Rethinking online tracking

  • Thema Stiftung
Data is one of the raw materials of the modern service society: it is used for purposes as diverse as medical research and recommending friends on Facebook. Today thousands of companies collect data about individuals, and the types of data that can be collected is growing with the number of smart devices we use:
smart watches, smart power meters, smart light switches. In many cases, this data is traded or sold to other companies. This puts the privacy of individuals at odds with the interests of businesses and of society as a whole

Paul Francis’ research group at the Max Planck Institute for Software Systems (MPI-SWS) in Kaiserslautern and Saarbrücken is exploring technologies that try to eliminate this conflict: they aim to provide (almost) all the benefits of data use, while eliminating (almost) all of the privacy concerns. Francis’ research is not only theoretical, but encompasses all aspects of the problem: technical, political, economic, and social.

The primary research instrument used to measure, understand, and influence these aspects is a spin-off start-up, Aircloak, which works closely with MPI-SWS researchers to test new technical ideas in practice and obtain feedback. Before he came to Germany, Paul Francis held research positions at Cornell University, NTT Software Labs Tokyo, Bellcore (Bell Communications Research), and MITRE, and was Chief Scientist at two Silicon Valley start-ups.

We look forward to your registration by 12. November 2014 via e-mail to nippel[at]

The Impulse aus der Zukunft series of events is a cooperative project of the Max Planck Gesellschaft and Technologiestiftung Berlin for experts from business and
industry. Approaches from basic research are presented which indicate promising routes for technological developments.


Lecture by
Prof. Dr. Paul Francis | Director
Max Planck Institute for Software Systems,
Saarbrücken and Kaiserslautern

Followed by discussion with
Dr. Christoph Peylo | Vice President
Deutsche Telekom Innovation Laboratories, Berlin


Nicolas Zimmer | CEO
Technologiestiftung Berlin