Data Ethics Philosophy and ethics of big data  
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  1. Investigate philosophical and ethical issues surrounding big data in the economic world.
  2. Promote the exchange of ideas and examples between academics and professionals.


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Data and algorithm dilemmas exist on two levels: personal, social.



  • Critical moment: privacy is surrendered for convenience, and control over personal identity is traded for pleasures.

    Money typically involved.

    Model case study: Tinder, a place where churning algorithms gain access to users’ intimate desires in exchange for fast romance.

    Model case study: Acxiom a company that buys data from various platforms (geo-data from T-Mobile, psychological data from Facebook, employment data from LinkedIn) for identity resolution, and then for combination into universal profiles, which are sold back into the economic world. Privacy evaporates as consumer needs find instant gratification. The questions are about what is gained and lost in the exchange, and what kinds of experiences become possible and desirable in a world flooded with personal information.

    Center: Data Ethics explores this level of data and algorithmic reality. Key concepts include privacy, identity, convenience, pleasures, money.



  • Critical moment: public institutions intersect with classical political tensions between social coercion, and security.

    Mass surveillance (as opposed to individual tracking) usually employed.

    Model cases include instances of governments accumulating citizens’ information to provide security (from accidents, disease, crime, terrorism).

    Key terms: surveillance, society, social justice.

    Center: Data Ethics connects only tangentially with these debates.




Data Ethics is published by Center: Data Ethics at Pace University in New York City.




Generous support gratefully acknowledged:

Flatworld Knowledge

Pace Center Data Ethics




Direct email


Surface mail

Center: Data Ethics/James Brusseau

Philosophy and Religious Studies Department
Pace University
1 Pace Plaza
New York, NY 10038

  James Brusseau @ Pace University Philosophy
      Ethics Workshop / Data Ethics    
        James Brusseau
      Surface mail    
        Center: Data Ethics / James Brusseau
Philosophy and Religious Studies Department
Pace University
1 Pace Plaza New York, NY 10038
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