Call for Paricipation - Workshop on Identity, Information and Context
October 21-22, 2008
Location: MIT Stata Center
An examination of the intersection of technology, security policy, and economic drivers within an information-centric view of the Future Internet towards a holistic identification framework.
'Liquid life' is the kind of life commonly lived in our contemporary, liquid-modern society. Liquid life cannot stay on course, as liquid-modern society cannot keep its shape for long. Liquid life is a precarious life, lived under conditions of constant uncertainty. (Z. Bauman)
This notion of liquidity in our lives and conditions is reflected in the choices we make with respect to relations (such as to providers or other users), choices of identities, information we are seeking and many more issues. Visions like D. Reed's Liquid Computing attempt to grasp the impact of this increased liquidity and change on the computing world. Also the vision of tussle networking, as outlined in the whitepaper on Identity in Information Networking by the PrivSec WG at CFP, outlines the importance of incorporating the ever-changing and often conflicting concerns of actors in a particular usage scenario in the way we assemble the resources to fulfill the tasks at hand. As our communications technologies have become increasingly integrated and central to both economic and societal organization and interaction, the problems of security have taken an increasingly central position, in particular in the light of the liquidity observed by many. Examples include: control of access to resources, privacy, trust, provenance, accountability, forensics and so forth. At the core of each of these we see a common set of questions, leading to similar approaches. The questions are Who?, What?, and Why?, embodying the issues of the actors or participants in an interaction, the resources or subjects of an interaction, and the constraints or type of interaction. By necessities each of these requires a single, or more likely composite, identification scheme in order to provide inclusion by reference. Thus, at the core of our challenge is identification and questions of identity.
The Grand Challenge
Three key technological transformations have occurred since the specification and realization of the Internet:
- Pervasiveness and enabling of new paradigms of communication in both space and time,
- Changes in several key assumptions underlying the TCP/IP model, and
- Transformation of the communication model enabled by web, search tools, pub/sub models to an information and event-based model, enabling discontinuities in space and time in communications as well as extension from a point-to-point model to a multi-party communication model.
Given these technological transformations as well as the necessity to cater for the increased liquidity in our lives, the challenge of developing a holistic approach to identity in such changing context is a grand one. In this, a key aspect in considering identification and identifiers derive from the fact that they are both derived from and must meet the requirements of both social and economic structures in which they are used. Current technologies are seemingly too inflexible with respect to incorporating dynamic and context-dependent relations that are the daily basis of our interaction. How to incorporate these relations in a holistic identification framework has been frequently attempted but still remains an open question to be answered.
Objective of the Workshop
In order to understand the crucial aspects surrounding the grand challenge to build a holistic identification framework, as well as the attempts from the past and the visions for the future, the workshop intends to bring together key participants from the intersection of identity, security, social networking and economic value chain communities to discuss potential ways forward. It is important to note this intersection of participants due to the systemic nature of the problem and the apparent need for a holistic approach towards a solution.
Expectation of Outcomes
The workshop is expected to jumpstart the discussion towards a holistic framework for identification that meets the needs for collaboration but also partitioning across evolving and ever changing social and economic structures. This will demand both scaling, partitioning and dynamic (re)organization of communities, the placement or roles of individuals within them as well as intercommunity dynamics and statics. The initial discussions of the workshop are expected to more concretely result in white papers on case studies and the envisioned early framework in this direction.
Please note: Attendance is limited by meeting space.