Exploring GDPR implications in student prototypes

Students from the Faculty of Law analyze prototypes made by students at Media City Bergen. The goal is to improve the prototypes' ability to meet the requirements of GDPR regulations.
In March 2021 students from Media City Bergen presented prototypes to students at the Law Faculty, and there was a lively discussion about privacy issues relating to new technology. Photo from Zoom-meeting.
Publisert: 10. juni 2021

This spring, in the courses «Legal technology: Artificial Intelligence and Law» and «Privacy and data protection – GDPR», law students were presented with prototypes made by students in the media and interaction design program.

The law students used these prototypes as legal cases and wrote assignments where they assessed and addressed current legal challenges and issues related to the prototypes. Students from the Media and interaction design program supplied information about the prototypes, and in this way contributed to the law students' assessments becoming more pragmatic and realistic in terms of technology and use.

Combining different fields of study

The minds behind this interdisciplinary collaboration are associate professors at the Faculty of Law; Malgorzata Agnieszka Cyndecka and Knut Martin Tande, as well as Lars Nyre; professor at Department of Information Science and Media Studies, and Audun Klyve Gulbrandsen, project developer in TekLab.

It all started with a visit to Media City Bergen in the autumn of 2020; a group from The Faculty of Law came to visit their colleagues at The Department of Information and Media Studies. During this visit, Malgorzata and Lars discovered a mutual interest in projects done by students at the media and interaction design program.

The projects appealed to the law professors because of their complexity and how they address relevant dilemmas. They were a great match for two of their legal courses.

– It is interesting to combine different fields of study. Media and interaction design students do not necessarily consider legal aspects when creating a prototype, and law students tend to have a different perspective on the matter than media students do, says associate professor Malgorzata Agnieszka Cyndecka.

Master student at Media City Bergen, Simen Larsen Johansen, presented his prototype of a robotic guide for people who visit large buildings like shopping centers or hospitals. Screenshot from Zoom-meeting.

The following prototypes are up for legal assessment:

Legal dilemmas

All four prototypes present legal dilemmas that are relevant in today's society. For instance, both PeTeR and Klimagotchi are dependent on the user sharing sensitive data such as information about their personal health. While Talkie, on the other hand, can raise more ethical dilemmas, because the prototype's intention is to be used for interviews with children in vulnerable situations.

Another questionable aspect is how the prototypes will store data. Several of them are based on the use of artificial intelligence, which means that user data will constantly be processed to further improve the prototype's AI.

Whether all of the prototypes' different functionalities is compliant to the GDPR regulations will also be interesting to look into. In other words; there are many relevant issues for the law students to address.

Publisert: 10. juni 2021
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