Call for Contributions: Young Digital Law Conference (July 5-7, 2023, Vienna), deadline January 8, 2023

The Research Platform ‘Governance of Digital Practices‘ together with the Department of Innovation and Digitalisation in Law and the Research Group Security and Privacy are proud to announce that the third annual conference Young Digital Law will take place from the 5th to the 7th of July 2023 at the University of Vienna!  The conference will focus on the topic “Bias in Law-Making. How Assumptions about Technology, Trustworthiness, and Human Agency underpin European Digital Law”.


Western law is grounded on the notion of humans as free, autonomous beings who are able to make informed choices and direct their steps based on reason and their moral consciousness. Social sciences have long questioned this narrative by pointing to the social embeddedness of the individual and the ways their viewpoints and actions are conditioned by their cultural, economic and social context. In a similar manner, more recent technological advancements, in particular in the field of data analysis and AI, are challenging the status of humans as superior active agents capable of independent thought, autonomous decision-making and the gift of learning.

Lawmakers have responded to this changing perception of human exceptionalism with all kinds of legal mechanisms. Requirements for transparency, explainability and human supervision of autonomous decision-making systems, even the prohibition of AI applications in contexts considered to be of unacceptable risk – all attempts to retain the moral and cognitive superiority of the human over the machine.

Young Digital Law 2023 would like to explore the assumptions about the human-machine-relation underpinning European technology law.


We would like to invite all young scholars and practitioners of digital law and policy to contribute to the conference in the form of:

  • individual presentations (20 min +10 min Q&A),

  • mixed panels (40 min + 20 min Q&A),

  • interactive workshops (90 min).


Interdisciplinary approaches at the intersection between digital law and related disciplines, such as computer sciences, social sciences or the humanities, are welcome!

Possible topics of contributions include (but are not limited to):

  • Which biases shape the making of digital law, and how?

  • How does prevailing and upcoming legislation picture the human-machine relationship, and why?

  • How do requirements for transparency, explainability, trustworthiness and human supervision translate into law & technology?

  • How could law & technology reflect the trust in human oversight in a practical and innovative way?

  • Why is the concept of human autonomy and agency so pivotal in Western law, and does it hold in practice?

  • How can and do related disciplines, such as computer sciences, social sciences or the humanities, shape lawmaking?

  • What kind of ‘bias’ is in the legislative acts and proposed drafts by the European Commission?


An abstract should consist of approximately 250 words and can be submitted in English or German. Preference will be given to onsite presentations/panels. Should it, however, not be possible for you to do your session onsite, please get in touch with us to discuss online options.

Written papers are not mandatory but the publishing of the conference proceedings is planned.

Deadline for submissions: 8th of January 2023.

Please send your abstract to


For further information about the call and the conference, please check Young Digital Law 2023 (