Politics and society, in all their many facets, have rarely been as of crucial topics as they are now and re:publica 2018 will be looking at this thematic closer than ever.

While civic tech is a natural thematic overlap for us, we will also be examining the interplay of technology and society on the day-to-day basis. Some of the success stories include increased awareness and defence of digital civil rights and the ongoing support from our and many other communities for refugees.

However, with algorithms, a post-factual age where examination and evaluation are near impossible, filter bubbles, and the apparent inability to create dialogue we can't ignore that some of these causes stem from this interplay of tech and society.

The question, of how we interact (digitally) with each other, remains: does the platform society influence the way we spread and shape our own opinions?

Legitimised, yet still scandalous, mass surveillance, targeted selection of data, digital policy, and social media shutdowns as means of control prior to elections will all be discussed in 2017.

How are the international movements for digital democracy and open data developing? What social and legislative processes should be initiated to shadow ever accelerating automation? Where humans reasoning fails, can the “incorruptible” blockchain deliver on its promise of outsourcing essential processes?

We want to create a space where we can dissect and analyse – and develop approaches to mitigate problematic developments. Despite all set-backs there is still room for success stories!