Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society (TILT)

TILT studies emerging technologies and their impact on the individual and society, recognizing the interplay between technology, regulation and fundamental values & human rights.

Pre-event / VICI

Privacy protection in the 21st century

New concepts, theories, and applications

Symposium 14 May 2019 & VICI panels 15 May 2019

In privacy protection, the traditional distinction between private and public physical spaces is becoming less useful in determining what really is protection-worthy. The walls of the home are ‘evaporating’ and it is becoming increasingly more difficult to use them to shield in-home activities. At the same time, through ubiquitous datafication and mobile devices, the home itself has lost its privileged role as the primary place of private life. Many people carry more private information in their pocket than could be revealed by a thorough search of their home. Public space and digital spaces are thus becoming important places for private life, while also becoming subject to increasingly omnipresent and sophisticated surveillance.

These challenges bring forward a number of interesting questions. What are the various aspects of private life that deserve protection in the 21st century? Can spatial approaches to privacy protection remain useful going forward? If the place-based boundary no longer works, can we identify a core of privacy which should receive a more robust protection? Can we ‘recreate’ the physical architecture that delimits a protected private sphere in digital space? How should we protect privacy in public spaces?

These questions have been addressed in the NWO-funded VICI project Privacy in the 21st century. Finding a new paradigm to protect citizens in the age of ubiquitous data (2014-2019), led by prof. Bert-Jaap Koops.  We will present the project’s results at this final symposium and continue the discussions in three VICI panels at the TILTing 2019 conference.

Symposium 14 May 2019

In the final closing conference of the VICI project, the VICI team will present the project’s findings and conclusions. These will be discussed by internat­ion­al scholars (including Michael Froomkin, Seda Guerses and others) and the audience.

Program highlights

  • Privacy typology and surveillance theory
  • Content approaches: the core of privacy and mosaic spheres theory
  • Spatial approaches: home 2.0, the digital home, and computer castles
  • Application spaces: surveillance in public, Dutch criminal procedure, and laws of nature

The full program can be found below.

This VICI symposium on 14 May 2019 is free of charge. You can register for the pre-event VICI symposium here.

VICI Panels - Call for abstracts

Researchers working on similar questions are invited to present their work at the TILTing Perspectives 2019 Conference in Tilburg. We especially encourage researchers in the fields of constitutional and criminal law to present interesting privacy frames and concepts emerging in their jurisdictions, but the call is open for researchers from all disciplines as long as the contribution fits within one of the following themes:

  • Content-focused privacy protection: which substantive frameworks can help protect privacy in the 21st century?
  • Spatial-based privacy protection: can privacy be protected by protecting ‘containers’ of private life?
  • Surveillance in public space: which concepts and frameworks work to protect privacy in surveilled public spaces?

The deadline for abstracts for the VICI panels is 11 January 2019. Abstracts (of 500-1000 words) should be sent to i.skorvanek@tilburguniversity.edu.

Full call: Please click here.

The registration for TILTing 2019 is open. You can register for the conference here.

Program VICI symposium – 14 May 2019

Please find the program for the VICI symposium “Privacy protection in the 21st century -New concepts, theories, and applications” on the 14th of May 2019 here.


The Symposium on 14 May 2019: TBA

The TILTing conference on 15-17 May 2019: Tilburg University


The pre-event VICI on 14 May 2019 is free of charge. You can register for the pre-event VICI symposium here.

The registration for TILTing 2019 is open. You can register for the conference here.

 tilt anniversary logo NWO