Data & Technology Politics

New digital technologies enable creativity, connect the world, and provide public goods and essential services. They also challenge conventional notions of privacy, facilitate crime, and enable surveillance and oppression. How and to which end these data-driven technologies are used is determined by political, corporate, societal, and individual choices. With two billion new – mostly non-Western – users expected to go online in the coming years, the political and economic stakes are rising. Contests over global rules for technologies and data transfer will only continue to heat up. We aim to contribute toward sound political, corporate, and societal choices through research, policy advice, and the fostering of strategic communities.


How European Internet Foreign Policy Can Compete in a Fragmented World

Europe should strengthen its narrative about the democratic rule of law online. That includes pointing to the costs of the authoritarian approach.


Front, Back, and Trap Doors: Refocusing the Encryption Debate

Demands that public authorities be legally granted access to encrypted data are neither expedient nor desirable.


How Germany Can Get the Facebook Scandal Right

Reducing the Cambridge Analytica scandal to issues of data protection misses both the core of the problem and the best remedies.


Thorsten Benner


Wade Hoxtell

Head of Operations

Isabel Skierka

Non-Resident Fellow

David Nonhoff

Research Associate

Alexander Pirang

Non-Resident Fellow

Tim Maurer

Non-Resident Fellow

Funding and Contact

Our Transatlantic Digital Debates dialogue program was generously supported by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, New America, Bertelsmann Foundation, Microsoft and IBM.

For more information, please contact Thorsten Benner.

Transatlantic Digital Debates

Transatlantic Digital Debates (TDD) is a dialogue program that brings together a cohort of 18 young professionals from Germany and the United States for two week-long sessions, hosted in each of the two countries. Fellows engage in discussions with local experts and decision-makers, address global challenges resulting from rapid technological change in society, and foster long-term bonds as future transatlantic leaders.

Learn more about the program