Research Project A.3: An Economic Perspective on Privacy and Trust
Organizations have to balance users' need for privacy and an increasing pressure to exploit their user data to stay ahead of their competition. Indeed, there are two major areas of tension: First, organizations need user data for their business models, but at the same time have to build trust in order to reach high numbers of users. Second, more and more business models, especially in the “shareconomy”, are based on mutual trust among their users.
In order to generate this trust, personal information about the users is necessary. Thus, these organizations have to balance users' concerns for privacy with disclosure necessary to create trust among their users. In order to address these issues, this research area aims at developing privacy preserving and trust enhancing business models that are economically successful. Major goal is to explore how organizations can consider users' need for privacy and trust in their business models and how this need might be monetized. This goal can be divided in three sub-goals: First, the current management of user data and privacy in companies needs to be investigated. Second, the effect of handling user data on success is supposed to be assessed. Finally, success factors for business models combining trust assessment and privacy protection are to be derived.