Ethics of Privacy

After completing this course:

  • the student is able to understand different ethical positions on privacy.
  • the student is able to compare different ethical positions on privacy to see where they may overlap and/or class.
  • the student is able to analyze current technologies, developments, and (potential) privacy risks in terms of different ethical positions.
  • the student is able to formulate ethically convincing (possible) solutions to privacy problems


Individual privacy is one of the most contested problems in contemporary liberal-democratic societies. In this course students will discuss the problem of privacy from ethical as well as social-philosophical and empirical perspectives. In seven classes, the student will learn in detail what the current debates are with regard to privacy within the philosophical field. Themes that will be addressed are: the history of the concept of privacy, the connection between privacy and autonomy and the value of privacy for the individual as well as for society.

Registration at

UvA students can enroll from 8 December 2016 onwards using the course code 5512ETPR6Y in SIS.

Contract students and students from other institutions can enroll through the registration form below.

Students who do the Minor Privacy Studies have priority.


Find the most up-to-date schedule on datanose

Recommended prior knowledge

The courses ‘Privacy: Big Data, Quantified Self, and Social Networks’ & ‘Privacy: Legal, Ethical, Medical, and Many More Perspectives’

Entry level

60 EC. This course is taught at the level of second-year students.


Conditions for admission
6 ECTS, 8 weeks
Language of instruction
Starts in

Published by  Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies