Digital Legal Studies: From regulating human behavior to regulating data

Project: Research project

Project Details


Classically, regulation targets human behavior. In an era of Big Data, artificial intelligence, and robotics which shape and sometimes even replace human behavior, however, the classic regulatory paradigm is challenged in fundamental ways. This research program aims to map, understand, and – to the extent possible – help shape the shift from a human-centric regulatory paradigm to a data-centric regulatory paradigm.

This project recognizes the importance of human behavior and human decision-making, but challenges the assumption that regulation should continue to primarily be focused on facilitating adequate human decision-making. Rather, the shift towards automated decision-making—with its conflation of norm-setting and norm-enforcement—may require a more fundamental rethinking of the regulatory paradigm.

To this purpose three research lines are pursued focusing on key elements of regulation shifting from a human behaviour and human relations to data relations and the behaviour of data systems:

- how rules can be formulated and enforced,
- which concepts can be used in regulation, and
- and which values are vital.
Effective start/end date1/08/191/08/25


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