NEW in 2021: FIRESIDE CHATS - next event: 27 Jan

The Digital Enlightenment Forum would like to invite you to an online ‘Fireside Chat’

What is this about?

A Fireside Chat is an online informal chat of 1 -1.5 hours. Participants are 6-10 young, promising PhD or masters’ level students/researchers or young professionals and a senior person from the world of policy, politics, industry or academia.

The senior person as a host will kick-off on a theme, followed by an open discussion. You will also exchange on the professional life experiences of the host. And get to know some new people!

Upcoming fireside chats

You can register your interest for these fireside chats:

-  27 January 2021 at 15:00 CET  -  Dr Thanassis Tiropanis on The centralisation-decentralisation pendulum on the Internet and the Web - research challenges

- 10 February 2021 at 15:00 CET  -  Prof Edward Jones-Imhotep on How to think about technology

- February 2021  -  Patrice Chazerand on “AI, a bridge too far? In which Pascal makes up for ‘Descartes’ Error’”

- February 2021  -  Prof Dr Jo Pierson on Artificial Intelligence

- Date tbc  -  Prof. Dr. Ulrike Felt on Trust, Solidarity and Ownership: Why cocreation matters in building successful health data platform

- Date tbc  -  Frits Bussemakeron Business Community Builder & D1G1T4L C0NN3CT0R

What can you get out of it?

  • Hear interesting insights about a theme that is close to your heart.
  • Pick up practical ideas from an experienced politician, policymaker, academic, entrepreneur, etc.
  • Meet people at the same stage of their professional and academic life as you
  • Perhaps continue staying in touch with them.

   Sounds interesting isn’t?

How can I register?

Simply send an email with a few lines on who you are, what you do, and mentioning the chat(s) you are interested in, to

All the information:

Upcoming fireside chats, content

We especially invite you to register your interest for this upcoming Fireside Chat:

27 January 2021 at 15:00 CET

Dr Thanassis Tiropanis on:  The centralisation-decentralisation pendulum on the Internet and the Web - research challenges


Associate Professor, Electronics and Computer Science - Web and Internet Science, University of Southampton

Thanassis is associate professor with the Web and Internet Science Group, Electronics and Computer Science, University of Southampton and is interested in distributed linked data infrastructures, linked data for higher education, social networks and social machines.

Prior to that he was assistant professor with the Athens Information Technology Institute (AIT) in Greece working on Web technologies and e-learning. Prior to AIT, Thanassis was a research fellow with University College London (UCL) where he worked on network and service management research for telecommunication services.

He holds a PhD in computer science from UCL, and a DipIng in computer engineering and informatics from the University of Patras, Greece.

He is also visiting associate professor at the department of Computer Science at the National University of Singapore and a senior member of IEEE, a chartered IT professional with BCS, a fellow of the Higher Education academy in the UK, a member of the ACM and a member of the Technical Chamber of Greece.

The centralisation-decentralisation pendulum on the Internet and the Web - research challenges

Patterns of transition from centralisation to decentralisation and vice versa have been observed throughout the evolution of the Internet and the Web and they correlate with major shifts in innovation and policy. Technological developments on computer networking, distributed systems, knowledge management and data mining have been key enablers in that process. At the present stage, decentralised data infrastructures have been proposed as an enabler for innovation by letting individuals control access to their data in data sharing ecosystems. Nevertheless, there are technological challenges on security, scalability, and optimisation when processing data on a large, decentralised scale. This fireside chat will discuss those challenges and roadmaps to further explore them. Further, it will discuss the implications of technological affordances and challenges on policymaking.

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