From Digital traces to Digital governance”

Activity: Academic talk or presentation typesInvited talk


Every day, we leave digital traces one way or another. Big data-driven innovations have been taking place across a wide range of digital products. On one hand, people enjoy convenient digital services, which change people’s everyday lives in various economic and social aspects; on the other, peoples’ antipathy is looming stronger towards the powerful commercial and political exploitations of the data tracking peoples’ daily lives. Therefore, digital sovereignty and governance has now attracted the attention of the societies and the regulation makers across the world. This talk is to focus on the controversy over “data traces” and different pathways for the societal transformation in the digital era. To illustrate, I will use the case in China as an exemplar – Alibaba’s cross-platform online service infrastructures with “live data” on the “cloud”, which enable MyBank to provide financial supports to millions of small and micro-enterprises (SMicroEs). I will discuss the possibility that China may pursue the “pathways” by taking the advantages of its cross-platform digital infrastructures and its cultural heritage, as the views and the positions toward “data traces” and “privacy” could be polarised based on people’s different life experiences, social settings and their outlooks of the world.
Period3 Oct 2019
Event typeConference
LocationEdinburgh, United KingdomShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • digital traces
  • big data-driven innovation
  • inclusive loan-lending
  • Sesame Credit system
  • Alibaba Ant Financial
  • China