We have been working with the Insight Centre for Data Analytics for two years now and one of our main areas of interest has been the ethics of Big Data research. We're not just talking privacy here - although that is part of it - we are also talking about the ethical implications of the research itself.
For a long time we have been wrestling with the size and the scale of the problem. How do you create an ethical framework when the ground is constantly moving under your feet?
There is an international effort to create this framework from the ground up. The idea is that if we look at individual pieces of research and examine the ethical implications on a case by case basis, we will be able to grow a system of ethics around Big Data research. We may not be able to predict what will happen in the future but if we have a solid grounding in the ethical issues around what we are doing in the present, those ethics precedents will inform what's coming down the line. There's a lot more to it of course, but needless to say we're very excited to be charged with driving this effort.