ADDA_Plenary talk: “Framing Digital Discourse: Infrastructures of Datafication and Automation”

Katharina Kinder-Kurlanda will be plenary speaker at the 4th Approaches to Digital Discourse Analysis (ADDA) conference , which will be held at the University of Klagenfurt from 12-14 October 2023.


Digital discourse is facilitated and structured by complex algorithmic systems that gather, process, and analyze user data to create value. The use of social media, search engines, video streaming services, and mobile applications results in the creation of vast amounts of digital data, such as images, videos, and text. Additionally, digital interactions generate numerous other digital traces, including timestamps, locations, and other automatically collected data. This datafication has enabled the development of various business models that allow users to pay for services with data, knowingly or unknowingly. The emergence of new data economies has created a situation in which some entities derive value from other individuals’ data, and participation is often predicated on providing data. The inability to access these proprietary data for research presents unique methodological, ethical, epistemological, and practical challenges in the study of digital spaces. At the same time, there is growing public awareness that the algorithmic curation of data, particularly on social media, is often problematic, with fake content and vulnerable individuals being targeted. Greater transparency of algorithms and data is needed, which necessitates additional research on digital discourse and its framing. This talk will discuss the ways in which researchers become involved in the creation of value out of data when studying digital discourse, as well as how their research influences the spaces that they examine. Furthermore, I will examine current developments in research data infrastructures that aim to address data inequality.

Humans in the Digital Age: New thematic doctoral programme

As of the winter term 2023/24, doctoral students will be able to enroll in a new thematic doctoral programme at the AAU: Humans in the Digital Age (HDA).

Digital technologies have transformative effects on most areas of our lives. And while the digital transformation brings about new research agendas and fields, the research questions that emerge often demand novel methodological and conceptual approaches and can substantially benefit from taking the interrelations between different disciplinary perspectives into account. In line with this, the doctoral programme HDA starts from the premise that understanding and shaping the digital transformation requires disciplinary entrenchment as well as a sensitivity for the interrelation between different disciplinary perspectives.

The programme is open to all doctoral students at the AAU who work on crucial questions of our digital age in one of a broad and varied range of research areas It provides doctoral students with access to the theories, methods, tools, and skills needed to investigate and understand the ongoing digital transformation from various perspectives, as well as to actively and responsibly contribute to shaping digital technologies and their usage contexts. The teaching plan foresees a combination of mandatory courses (10 ECTS) and elective courses (8 ECTS) that include a doctoral colloquium, courses that develop and academic core skills as well as dedicated theory and method classes that can be tailored to students’ needs.

In a supportive and interdisciplinary space, doctoral students strengthen their skills in critical thinking, recognizing ethical aspects, and communicating effectively. While developing high-level technical skills, they also learn about alternative methodologies, thus strengthening their creative problem-solving skills. The collective formats and the continuous exchange with peers and more senior researchers support the advancement of individual PhD projects all the way to successful completion.



The doctoral programme HDA starts in the winter term 2023/24 at AAU. It is possible to enter into the programme at any time. If you are interested in enrolment, please see the list of potential supervisors and follow the admission process indicated here. The language of instruction is English.




Data walking in Klagenfurt

How do districts differ in terms of building and hedge height and what does this tell us about affluence? Where are the servers located, that QR codes in Klagenfurt link to and how are they globally distributed? How is noise and pollution (unequally) present in the city and what quality criteria can be established for measurement and interpretation? These are some of the questions that a group of MA and PhD students from the Universities of Klagenfurt and Graz investigated on a data walk – with inspiring insights. Read more

“Statistical Tools and Techniques in Side-channel Cryptanalysis”

June 13th  2023   13:00 – 14:30 Uhr   Outdoor HS Kosuta (in case of rain: N.2.57)

Aakash Chowdhury, MSc (Cybersecurity Research Group)


Side-channel cryptanalysis (SCA) is a critical research area in cybersecurity that aids in the development of countermeasures against attackers who are permitted to extract secret information from cryptographic devices such as smart cards and mobile phones. Evaluating such countermeasures necessitates determining the amount of information leaked by the device. To serve this purpose, information extraction approaches that have been published to date effectively combine a “leakage model” with a “distinguisher”. In the scope of statistical analysis against cryptographic devices, Mutual Information (MI) has been employed as a generic distinguisher by the side channel community for numerous years to measure the probabilistic dependency. My earlier focus was to find a nonparametric estimation approach to MI that allow us to capture the susceptibility of a cryptographic implementation in an embedded device. Presently, I have been working on developing efficient-statistical tools for multivariate leakage detection testing.