Digital Society

Helping policymakers identify and respond to technology’s challenges, enabling society to harness the benefits of the new information economy

Research, commentary, and events

  • Big data futuristic abstract visualization with map, illustration by monsitj/Adobe Stock

    Project

    Protecting human rights in the digital age

    01 Feb 2021

    The UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) has commissioned RAND Europe to conduct a study aimed at identifying and scoping impactful ideas for interventions and activities to foster and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms online.

  • Group of diverse people with speech bubbles, illustration by melita/Adobe Stock

    Project

    The use of public engagement for technological innovation

    29 Jan 2021

    Because different public engagement techniques may be more or less effective in promoting selected outcomes, researchers found that a diverse range of techniques should be used to engage the public in technological innovation.

  • Geirangerfjord in Norway, a Unesco World Heritage site, photo by MyWorld/Adobe Stock

    Project

    Helping to inform the future of research and innovation in Norway

    04 Jan 2021

    Through a mixed-methods, participatory approach, researchers are helping the Research Council of Norway to develop a strong and resilient research and innovation environment in Norway in the strategic areas of oceans, green transition, health and welfare, cohesion and globalisation, and technology and digitalisation.

  • Skull hologram on modern computer background, cybercrime and hacking concept, photo by Igor/Adobe Stock

    Project

    Technology and the future of cybercrime

    15 Dec 2020

    To prepare for and mitigate the impact of emerging technologies on cybercrime, Estonia could consider broad anti-cybercrime capacity building; seek legal, regulatory and organisational agility; and invest in technological expertise, skills and research.

  • Social media network and remote work illustration, photo by peshkov/Adobe Stock

    Project

    Using social media data to ‘nowcast’ migration around the globe

    05 Nov 2020

    Because official statistics can be delayed or fail to correctly capture the full extent of migration, making informed policy decisions can be a challenge. Researchers are developing an approach to compute near real-time migration estimates for Europe and the United States using social media data.

  • Close-up of police body camera, photo by Lutsenko Oleksandr/Adobe Stock

    Project

    Assessing the impacts of digital government transformation in the EU

    26 Jun 2020

    A case study on the use of body worn cameras by police forces in the UK offers an example of how governments can potentially take advantage of emerging digital technologies to address systemic challenges.

  • Virtual human 3D illustration with computer code, photo by monsitj/Getty Images

    Commentary

    A Machine Learning Approach Could Help Counter Disinformation

    25 Jun 2020

    Disinformation has become a central feature of the COVID-19 crisis. This type of malign information and high-tech “deepfake” imagery poses a risk to democratic societies worldwide by increasing public mistrust in governments and public authorities. New research highlights new ways to detect and dispel disinformation online.

  • Futuristic digital business cryptocurrency candle chart, illustration by Eduard Muzhevskyi/Adobe Stock

    Project

    Exploring the criminal use of Zcash and cryptocurrencies

    06 May 2020

    While most transactions made with virtual coins are legitimate, cryptocurrencies have also been used for criminal purposes. Researchers found no evidence of widespread illicit use of Zcash, but that may be because malicious users do not fully understand its operating model.

  • People wearing protective face masks wait for a bus in front of St. Paul's Cathedral in London, Britain, March 19, 2020, photo by Simon Dawson/Reuters

    Commentary

    COVID-19: The Questions Ahead for Future Travel and Transport

    15 Apr 2020

    COVID-19 could have lasting effects on future travel patterns. Future scenarios, a method for visualizing different possible futures, can help inform decisions in deeply uncertain situations and can be used to think about policies that are important for people's quality of life regardless of how the future unfolds.

  • Woman working at home at a computer, photo by SolStock/Getty Images

    Commentary

    It Is More Important Than Ever for Employers to Look After Staff Health and Wellbeing

    09 Apr 2020

    COVID-19 will likely have a direct effect on the health and wellbeing of employees. While many employers responding to the COVID-19 crisis have understandably been concerned with business resilience, processes, and performance, it is important that they also continue to focus on the health and wellbeing of staff.

  • Two men looking at a phone and wearing face masks, photo by ozgurdonmaz/Getty Images

    Commentary

    How to Contain the Disinformation Virus

    09 Apr 2020

    Like COVID-19, disinformation spreads only if we help it spread. While we have all been asked to stay at home as responsible citizens to contain the virus, we should also feel responsible for making it harder for disinformation to spread.

  • People waiting to board a subway train, photo by william87/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Our Actions Determine What We Read and See Online. Algorithms Are Only a Part of That Process

    07 Feb 2020

    As social media has increasingly become the main outlet for people to acquire news and opinion, there are concerns about the effect of algorithm-driven services on the spread of misleading information. But the issue doesn't merely lie with how social platforms use algorithms to deliver content.

  • Abstract globe with blue lights and networks, photo by imaginima/Getty Images

    Project

    Measuring migration using big data

    12 Dec 2019

    Social media data may help decisionmakers to 'nowcast' migration flows and stocks of migrants. A team of researchers attempted to develop a method of measuring real-time mobility and migration. The results of the study were promising.

  • Medical health care science innovation concept, illustration by Panuwat/Adobe Stock

    Project

    How does the pharmaceutical industry reuse health data?

    12 Nov 2019

    Several important factors can support or hinder the reuse of pharmaceutical data in the EU, including the availability, interoperability and quality of data; data analytic skills and experience; and the presence of clear and uniform regulations.

  • Young adults using smartphones at university college backyard break

    Project

    Tackling the challenges of algorithm-driven social media

    30 Oct 2019

    Improving consumers' media literacy could reduce their vulnerability to disinformation. Researchers propose a behavioural science experiment to encourage people to be more aware of their own online behaviour