Cathleen Berger

Main focus: Digital policies

Twitter handle: @_cberger_


Languages: English, German

City: Berlin

Country: Germany

Topics: women in tech, digital literacy, freedom online, digital rights, foreign policy, privacy, security, human rights, ict4d, internet governance, international relations, digital society, digital inclusion


Cathleen Berger is currently leading Mozilla's engagement with Global Internet Fora. In this position, she is tasked with identifying emerging trends around privacy and security, digital inclusion and literacy, openness and decentralisation in order to remain aware and ahead of global tech policy developments. Moreover, she is participating as an expert in the Transatlantic Cyber Forum, looking in particular into encryption and government hacking.

Prior to this, she worked within the International Cyber Policy Coordination Staff at the German Foreign Office where she was in charge of divising strategies for Internet Governance, promoting human rights and freedom online, as well as drafting policy concepts for capacity building and digital development. Cathleen was also a fellow at the Centre for Internet and Human Rights (CIHR), an associate at Stiftung Neue Verantwortung (snv) and a Global Governance Futures fellow at the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi). In former positions, she worked as a research assistant with the German Institute for International and Security Policy (SWP) looking, among other things, into practices of data exchange in the European Union and as a visiting lecturer at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena.

She studied European Studies and Political Science at the European University Viadrina, Frankfurt/Oder, the Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan and the Galatasaray University, Istanbul.

Examples of previous talks / appearances:

Interview about privacy during Berlin Fashion Week

In 2018, Mozilla and Tactical Technology Collective ran part of the Glassroom exhibition, primarily focused on the Data Detox Kit during Berlin Fashion Week.

Wonder how fashion and data protection go together? Watch the interview.

This talk is in: English
Die digital Rettung der Welt -- wo verlaufen die roten Linien?, Bits&Bäume

Am Sonntag, den 18. November durfte ich gemeinsam mit Luis Neves, Sweelin Heuss und Dr. Thomas Engelke, moderiert von Geraldine de Bastion über die roten Linien zwischen Daten- und Umweltschutz auf der Bits&Bäume Konferenz diskutieren. Eine philosophische Runde. Aber eine, die dazu anregt, Umwelt- und Digitalbewegung häufiger zusammen zu bringen.

This talk is in: German
The web needs a voice: literally, technically, politically

This talk, together with Michael Henretty and Ola Gasidlo, presents some of our ideas for how to tackle three dimensions of the future Web: voice recognition, web compatibility, and digital inclusion.

When your latest Siri, Alexa or Cortana fail to answer your questions because they seem to simply not understand your instructions, that’s probably because you’re not a (white) male with a mainstream American accent. Voice recognition tools are only as good as their training data, if the data set doesn’t include all sort of accents, dialects, and dynamic adaptation, the systems we built on top of it will never fully reap their potentials. Creating an inclusive, and freely available database to train speech algorithms comes with its challenges - but they’re not unsolvable. And once we have that? That’s when we need to translate and connect these tools to our everyday web experience, writing code that is accessible, compatible, and adaptable across whichever platform you use to access the Web. We can already see a push to create a speech driven future of the Web, but while this is still a vision for most users, the technical questions underlying this development are being addressed now - which is why we need to make sure our answers contribute to a healthy environment. And once we have the training data and the standards? That’s when our political contexts will be yet again put to a test: how can we make sure our societies continue to grow in an open and inclusive manner? What do we need to pay attention to, if we don’t want technologies to become our oppressors? It’s in our hands to use the tools we create to make sure they give power to the people - because POP culture needs a voice.

This talk is in: English
Developing an international digital agenda,

On November 28, 2017 I had the pleasure to join a panel moderated by Léa Steinacker (Wirtschaftswoche), featuring Dr. Christoph Beier (GIZ) and MD Miguel Berger (Federal Foreign Office) to discuss the potential for developing an international digital agenda. It was an insightful 30min debate.

This talk is in: English