E-book of the week: “Privacy as Virtue: Moving Beyond the Individual in the Age of Big Data”, by Bart van der Sloot

Privacy as Virtue discusses whether a rights-based approach to privacy regulation still suffices to address the challenges triggered by new data processing techniques such as Big Data and mass surveillance. A rights-based approach generally grants subjective rights to individuals to protect their personal interests. However, large-scale data processing techniques often transcend the individual and their interests.

Virtue ethics is used to reflect on this problem and open up new ways of thinking. A virtuous agent not only respects the rights and interests of others, but also has a broader duty to act in the most careful, just and temperate way. This applies to citizens, to companies such as Apple, Google and Facebook and to governmental organizations that are involved with large scale data processing alike.

The author develops a three-layered model for privacy regulation in the Big Data era. The first layer consists of minimum obligations that are independent of individual interests and rights. Virtuous agents have to respect the procedural pre-conditions for the exercise of power. The second layer echoes the current paradigm, the respect for individual rights and interests. While the third layer is the obligation of aspiration: a virtuous agent designs the data process in such a way that human flourishing, equality and individual freedom are promoted.”

https://doi.org/10.1017/9781780686592

Publisher: Intersentia, 2017

Illustration (cropped): Allegory of Virtue, by Antonio da Corregio (c. 1531), public domain, via Wikipedia

E-book of the week: “China’s Strategic Multilateralism: Investing in Global Governance”, by Scott L. Kastner, Margaret M. Pearson and Chad Rector

“China sometimes plays a leadership role in addressing global challenges, but at other times it free rides or even spoils efforts at cooperation. When will rising powers like China help to build and maintain international regimes that sustain cooperation on important issues, and when will they play less constructive roles? This study argues that the strategic setting of a particular issue area has a strong influence on whether and how a rising power will contribute to global governance. Two strategic variables are especially important: the balance of outside options the rising power and established powers face, and whether contributions by the rising power are viewed as indispensable to regime success. Case studies of China’s approach to security in Central Asia, nuclear proliferation, global financial governance, and climate change illustrate the logic of the theory, which has implications for contemporary issues such as China’s growing role in development finance.”

https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108695725

Publisher: Cambridge University Press, 2018

Print version: 327(51) HEIA 124018

E-book of the week: “Sovereign Debt Crises: What Have We Learned?”, ed. by J.P. Bohoslavsky and K. Raffer

“There is an obvious need to learn more about why some countries succeed and others fail when dealing with debt crises. Why do some sovereign debtors overcome economic problems very quickly and at minor human rights costs for their people, while others remain trapped by debts for years struggling with overwhelming debt burdens and exacerbating economic problems and human suffering? This book analyzes fourteen unique or singular country cases of sovereign debt problems that differ characteristically from the ‘ordinary’ debtor countries, and have not yet received enough or proper attention – some regarded as successful, some as unsuccessful in dealing with debt crises. The aim is to contribute to a better understanding of the policy options available to countries struggling with debt problems, or how to resolve a debt overhang while protecting human rights, the Rule of Law and the debtor’s economic recovery.”

https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108227001

Publisher: Cambridge University Press, 2017

Print version: 336.3 HEIA 120441

Illustration: book cover

E-book of the week: “Pandemics and Emerging Infectious Diseases: The Sociological Agenda”, by Robert Dingwall, Lily M. Hoffman and Karen Staniland

“Infectious disease pandemics are a rising threat in our globalizing world. This agenda-setting collection provides international analysis of the pressing sociological concerns they confront us with, from cross-border coordination of public health governance to geopolitical issues of development and social equity. Focuses on vital sociological issues raised by resurgent disease pandemics. Detailed analysis of case studies as well as broader, systemic factors. Contributions from North America, Europe and Asia provide international perspective. Bold, agenda-setting treatment of a high-profile topic.”

https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/graduateinstitute/detail.action?docID=1222575

Publisher: John Wiley, 2013.

E-book of the week: “Succeeding with your Master’s Dissertation: A Step-by-step Handbook”, 3rd ed. by John J. Biggam

“This book provides in-depth guidance on how to complete your dissertation, thus meeting the needs of students eager for practical assistance in this common place, but challenging, mode of assessment.”

https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/graduateinstitute/detail.action?docID=1920721

Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education, 2014