UCL Department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy


Digital Technologies Policy Laboratory

STEaPP's Digital Technologies Policy Lab works collaboratively across disciplines and with the policy community to develop responses to the challenges and opportunities of emerging technologies

New and emerging digital technologies are reshaping the ways that we interact, work, and govern. They have profound implications for the promotion of justice and equity, for economic growth, for the provision of public goods, and for international affairs and security. Due to the pace of change as well as the scale and scope of these transformations, the formulation of policies that effectively address these issues is particularly difficult. In order to support sound policy solutions in this context, the Digital Technologies Policy Lab works closely with the national and international policy community to understand their goals and challenges and to develop research projects that provide solutions.

We have a number of projects underway in STEaPP that have been co-designed with policy makers. These are typically oriented around specific research questions that have been developed collaboratively - with real attention to the specific needs of those who work to design and implement innovative policy approaches to the deeply challenging problems as well as the unprecedented opportunities brought about by technological change.


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PETRAS National Centre of Excellence for IoT Systems Cybersecurity

PETRAS is a consortium of 12 research institutions with outstanding expertise in securing the connected world, tackling critical issues in privacy, ethics, trust, reliability, acceptability, and security

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Gender and IoT

Gender and IoT is an interdisciplinary project exploring the implications of IoT on gender-based domestic violence and abuse and is funded by a Social Science Plus+ award from UCL's Collaborative Social Science Domain

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Evaluating Cyber Security Evidence for Policy Advice (ECSEPA)

Providing support for cyber security policy makers in the UK, specifically civil servants who provide short and long term policy advice, either in response to specific crisis incidents or in the context of longer term planning for national security and capacity building

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ECSEPA Cybersecurity Governance Mapping Project

The Mapping Exercise is an extension of the EPSRC funded project, 'Evaluating Cyber Security Evidence for Policy Advice' (ECSEPA)

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RISCS: Research Institute in Sociotechnical Cyber Security

RISCS is the UK’s first academic Research Institute to focus on understanding the overall security of organisations, including their constituent technology, people and processes


CR4B: Cyber Readiness for Boards (CR4B)

CR4B seeks to investigate how corporate boards assess cyber risk and make decisions about investments in cyber security


PACE: Privacy-Aware Cloud Ecosystems

Using technological approaches to improve trust, transparency and accountability in cloud ecosystems

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Standardizing and Regulating Emerging Technologies

What are the main challenges of standardizing emerging digital technologies and processes such as the Internet of Things (IoT) or algorithmic decision systems (ADS)? How can standards encourage responsible innovation and underpin public policy objectives?


Geopolitics of Industrial internet of things STandards (GISt)

Investigating the extent to which political interest is embedded in the fora, processes and communities of practice that set security standards by which the IoT is implemented

Other Projects
International Cooperation on the IoT
Violence, Abuse and Mental Health Network (VAMHN)
STEaPP Contributors
Professor Madeline CarrPrincipal Investigator and Director of the Digital Policy Laboratory; she is also Professor of Global Politics and Cybersecurity
Dr Uchenna AniResearch Associate, PETRAS Centre of Excellence
Dr Irina Brass, Associate Professor in Regulation, Innovation and Public Policy
Dr Kruakae Pothong, Research Associate, PETRAS Centre of Excellence
Dr Ine SteenmansLecturer in Futures, Analysis and Policy
Dr Leonie TanczerLecturer in International Security and Emerging Technologies
Professor Jeremy Watson CBEProfessor of Engineering Systems and Director and PI of the PETRAS Centre of Excellence
Srinidhi VasudevanResearch Fellow, Cyber Readiness for Boards
Dr Jose LlanosResearch Fellow, Privacy Awareness Cloud Ecosystems
Dr Saheli Datta BurtonResearch Fellow, GiST