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  • Warandelaan 2, Montesquieu Building, room M 713

    5037 AB Tilburg


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Research Topic

Cognitive Freedom in the context of Human Rights protection against manipulation of Free Thought by Artificial Intelligence



  • Prof. dr. Paul de Hert
  • Dr. Bart van der Sloot 


Research Description 

The Orwellian dystopian concept of ‘Thoughtcrime’, illustrated as an exaggerated form of state control and destruction of personal liberty, has become a fast-approaching reality with increasing advancements in Artificial Intelligence and the popularity of manipulative algorithms. The issue that this research seeks to address is the violation of one of the triumvirates of absolute rights, namely Freedom of Thought, by way of obstructing natural cognitive reasoning with AI-designed thought manipulation. Tracking online user activity to create a landscape of the ‘forum internum’ and the utilization of this profiling to extrapolate personal vulnerabilities for the facilitation of cognitive manipulation has colossal consequential effects on our cardinal conceptualization of normative agency, democracy, and liberty.

This research techno-progressively investigates the Human Rights protections intended to save natural persons against the breach of the absolute right to think freely. The understanding of the Freedom of Thought and for it being breached through cognitive hacking, the abstractness of the forum internum, and the resultant intersectional dimension of the manipulation that may occur which poses an unprecedented assault on most if not all fundamental rights.





LL.M Law and Technology:

  • Privacy and Data Protection - Teaching Assistant 
  • Master's thesis supervisor