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Press release

ECDF and Elsevier announce ‘Conversations on Science in the Digital Future’ initiative

Berlin | November 14, 2022

Einstein Center Digital Future (ECDF)(opens in new tab/window), the center for digitalization research based in Berlin, and Elsevier, a global leader in research publishing and information analytics, will co-host an innovative new series of panel discussions for the research community – ‘ECDF and Elsevier Conversations on Science in the Digital Future’.

The research community has access to many tools and services that provide research information and analytics. The number and capabilities of these tools and services is growing, as computer power continues to increase, technologies get more sophisticated, and the volume of research information and data expands. The ‘Conversations on Science in the Digital Future’ initiative aims to promote an open dialogue about data usage in the research sector. We hope these discussions will lead to greater understanding and collaboration between the research community, publishers and societies.

Over the next several months, the series will take deep dives into current and impactful topics, covering data usage in science, data privacy, vulnerable population and assessment data, synthetic data, and artificial intelligence and ethics in scholarly publishing. The hybrid events will take place at the ECDF in Berlin and online.

The initiative will start on 22 November 2022 with the first event on ‘Data Privacy in the Digital Era’. Dr. Max von Grafenstein, Professor for Digital Self-Determination at ECDF and Universität der Künste Berlin, Dr. IJsbrand Jan Aalbersberg, SVP of Research Integrity at Elsevier, and Dr. Wolfram Horstmann, Director of the SUB Göttingen Library and Head of the DFG Libraries Committee, will discuss topics such as usage tracking, its purposes and limitations, and what governance is needed to create transparency and foster trust.

Dr. Odej Kao, Professor for Computer Science and Speaker of the ECDF, said: “One part of digitalization of research is aimed at innovation and developing solutions for current challenges, however, at ECDF we also focus on the impact of an increasingly digitalized world on individuals and our society. When it comes to collecting data, ethical questions and privacy concerns need to weigh just as heavily as the benefits for researchers, their institutions and connected businesses. This is exactly what we intend with this series: Transparent and diverse conversations on research data and its utilization in the digital era.”

Dr. Max Voegler, VP Global Strategic Networks at Elsevier, said: “Supporting research in the digital era requires an open and proactive conversation between the various stakeholders in and around the research community. Individual researchers and their institutions rightly want to know what data is being collected, how it is processed, shared, and the benefits to them. In collaboration with ECDF, the aim of this series is to promote a diverse and insightful exchange of ideas on responsible research data usage and how it can support innovation, research and entrepreneurship.”

To register for the first panel discussion, ‘Data Privacy in the Digital Era’ on 22 November 2022 at 3pm CET, please email your full name, job title and organization you work for to [email protected](opens in new tab/window)


Notes for editors

About Einstein Center Digital Future

The Einstein Center Digital Future (ECDF)(opens in new tab/window) is an interdisciplinary project of Technische Universität Berlin, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Berlin University of the Arts. So far, a total of 44 professors have been appointed at the universities and the participating colleges. The ECDF sees itself as a cross-university nucleus for researching and promoting digital structures in science, business and society. The center creates links in the field of digitalization, develops new forms of collaboration, focuses on innovative interdisciplinary cutting-edge research, and attracts excellently trained young scientific talent to Berlin. From April 2023, the ECDF will continue as "ECDF-New Generation" and focus on the areas of Connected Health, Societal Transformation and Sustainable Cities.

About Elsevier

As a global leader in scientific information and analytics, Elsevier helps researchers and healthcare professionals advance science and improve health outcomes for the benefit of society. We do this by facilitating insights and critical decision-making with innovative solutions based on trusted, evidence-based content and advanced AI-enabled digital technologies.

We have supported the work of our research and healthcare communities for more than 140 years. Our 9,500 employees around the world, including 2,500 technologists, are dedicated to supporting researchers, librarians, academic leaders, funders, governments, R&D-intensive companies, doctors, nurses, future healthcare professionals and educators in their critical work. Our 2,900 scientific journals and iconic reference books include the foremost titles in their fields, including Cell Press, The Lancet and Gray’s Anatomy.

Together with the Elsevier Foundation(opens in new tab/window), we work in partnership with the communities we serve to advance inclusion and diversity in science, research and healthcare in developing countries and around the world.

Elsevier is part of RELX(opens in new tab/window), a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. For more information on our work, digital solutions and content, visit



Samira Franzel

Einstein Center Digital Future

E-mail Samira Franzel
Headshot of David Tucker


David Tucker

Director of Research Communications

E-mail David Tucker