TC 9 – ICT and Society - Aims and Scopes

est. 1976, revised 2008, 2009


The TC9 aims:

*    To develop understanding of how ICT innovation is associated with change in society;

*    To influence the shaping of socially responsible and ethical policies and professional practices.


The TC9 fosters multidisciplinary discourse into:

*    The role of ICT in the change of particular domains of human activity, including work; the home and private life; governance.

*    Ethical, political, economic and cultural dimensions of ICT innovation.

*    Issues stemming from ICT innovation, such as gender, the phenomenon of virtuality, sustainable development.


WG9.1 - Computers and Work
est. 1977


*    to study and report on how computers have affected employment levels, job content and structure, working conditions, career patterns, and participation problems;

*    to give an account of problems relating to computers and work, and of proposed measures for dealing with these problems;

*    to encourage and support the design and development of systems which promote not only efficiency but provide job satisfaction, for example through interesting work and reduction of stress. 


The effects of computerization on the lives of three distinct groups of person:

*    computer professionals,

*    users of computers,

*    non-users affected by computers. 

WG9.2 - Social Accountability
est. 1977, revised 2009


*    To provide an international forum for assessing the social consequences of ubiquitous Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and its applications

*    To promote the safe and socially beneficial development and use of ICT

*    To encourage a human-centred and inclusive approach in the design and implementation of ICT, together with responsible long-range planning

*    To foster academic discussion on the use of ICT in its capacity to enhance the quality of life


Those aspects of ICT development and implementation that impact on society in general and which affect the public interest in particular, such as:

*    Privacy and confidentiality

*    Inclusion, access for all, and choice

*    Equality in system relationships

*    User and IT professional education and awareness

*    Social consequences of future technologies

*    Ethical, legal and regulatory issues 

WG9.3 - Home-Oriented Informatics and Telematics
est. 1988, revised 1989


*    Foster benevolent design, develop-ment, implementation, applications and use of Home-Oriented Informatics and Telematics (HOIT).

*    Encourage surveys and studies on HOIT.

*    Develop methodologies for studying social implications of HOIT.

*    Establish a global platform for interaction, exchange, joint initiatives and co-operation between such groups as:
- the end of users of HOIT: members of households
- industrial developers and designers of HOIT technology and related services
- implementation designers
- policy, decision making, social and consultative bodies
- architects and urban planners
- scientists. 


The social implications of informatics, communications and telematics in the home, the family and its environment (HOIT);


*    actual and potential human usefulness of HOIT;

*    social impact of these technologies and their applications;

*    developments of the underlying infrastructure;

*    rationale in innovation and design processes;

*    dynamics of technology development.

WG 9.3 explicitly cares about the position of and the potentials for vulnerable groups like children, less-educated, disabled, elderly and non-employed people, paid and non-paid workers at home, cultural minorities, unaware users and others. 

WG9.4 - Social Implications of Computers in Developing Countries
est. 1989, revised 2007


*    to collect, exchange and disseminate experiences of information and communications technology (ICT) implementation in developing countries;

*    to develop a consciousness amongst professionals, policy makers and public on social implications of ICT in developing nations;

*    to develop criteria, theory, methods, and guidelines for design and implementation of culturally adapted information systems;

*    to create a greater interest in professionals from industrialized countries to focus on issues of special relevance to developing countries through joint activities with other Technical Committees.


*    national ICT policy issues;

*    culturally adapted computer technology and information systems;

*    role of transnational corporations, regional and international cooperation and self-sufficiency in informatics;

*    social awareness of ICT and ICT literacy. 

WG9.5 – Virtuality and Society
est. 1989, revised 1999, 2000, 2006, 2008


The IFIP Working Group 9.5 (Virtuality & Society) sees information and communication technologies as being intertwined with society. In this sense, virtuality is taken as constituting both the social and the technical modes of existence. The aim therefore of this WG is to explore the globality of virtuality, the complex, emergent and changing nature of this field and to act as a location for transdisciplinary work on virtuality. Through workshops and conferences the WG will promote a dialogue and mutual exchange from a diverse set of disciplines such as computing, information systems, media studies, social theory and philosophy but also anthropology, organizational studies, gender studies, politics and ethics.


The scope of the working group is all aspects of virtuality as evident in a multiplicity of empirical sites and social phenomena. Given its scope, we welcome contributors from, but not limited to, the following areas:

*    Ethics of virtuality

*    Virtual media and art

*    Computing games

*    Telemedicine

*    Internet studies

*    Organizational Aspects of Virtuality

*    Virtual politics and political web-sites

*    Virtual reality

WG9.6/11.7 - Information Technology Mis-Use and the Law
est. 1990, revised 1992, 2001


*    To foster co-operation between the "Computers and Society" and "Information Security" communities on issues of "IT misuse and the law".

*    To develop an understanding in IFIP committees and national bodies of:

*       threats associated with IT systems and the related legal concerns.

*       risks to people and organisations arising from these threats.

*       responsibilities of people and organisations arising from legal and other provisions for information security.

*       risks arising from incoherency between legal, technical and managerial provisions.

*       the impact of IT systems on the current law, e.g. (criminal and civil law) and potential problems.

*    To propose and/or evaluate legal and other prescriptions to combat these threats and their associated risks.

*    To engender information exchange on threats, their origins, and possible consequences.

*    To propose and/or evaluate legal and other appropriate courses of action.


*    Analysis of existing and emerging threats to IT systems security, and the associated risks to people, organisations and society.

*    Analysis of security principles.

*    Aspects of the law where the use or introduction of IT on a global scale has rendered the current law (and/or its interpretations) obsolete or obsolescent or made it unenforcable.

*    Analysis of potential means of countering and mitigating threats, e.g. legal frameworks, ethical standards, managerial procedures, and other social factors applicable to behaviour and responsibilities in the context of IT systems.

*    Possible solutions.

*    New legal, social and organisational consequences of the development and use of IT systems.

WG9.7 - History of Computing
est. 1992


*    To provide a central vehicle for information interchange regarding the methods and techniques of historio-graphy, especially as related to the opportunities for the studies of contemporary history.

*    To provide expertise for the design, implementation and operation of archives and displays related to the history of information processing.

*    To encourage the development of national archives.

*    To develop a program of &132;Pioneers' Days" which recognize the contribution of pioneers and anniversaries of major events.

*    To identify pioneers worthy of an appreciation and distinction and make "IFIP Pioneer Awards".

*    To develop publication plans for histories of Information Processing.

*    To promote the inclusion of historical modules in appropriate curricula. 


The history of computing and informatics with a view to providing the impetus to preserve the records and artifacts of information processing inventions, practices and activities throughout the world under the auspices of IFIP and its constituent organizations. One special focus is the socio-historical context and consequences of Information Technologies. 

WG9.8 Gender Diversity and ICT
est. 2001, 2009


This WG is dedicated to research and action how different areas of society being transformed by computer technology with particular emphasis on changes in women’s work and life and how these have come about. It is based on the integration of gender studies and computer science. Membership is open to both women and men.

In this context the WG aims

*    to serve as an international, interdisciplinary communication forum and to hold discussions in workshops and conferences,

*    to exchange women’s experiences as scholars and professionals in information technology,

*    to integrate feminist perspectives into computer science,

*    to develop an understanding in the IFIP communities and national bodies of the gendered aspects in design, realisation, and implementation of information systems,

*    to propose and/or evaluate appropriate courses of action.


The topics cover the transitions from women’s traditional work to work based on modern technology, from communication within personal communities to virtual communities, from traditional gendered life to new gendered perspectives. Computerisation is understood in the narrow sense of computing systems as well as in the broader sense which includes the organisational, ethical, and social context of design and usage.

Discourses are linked to

*    the analysis of the effects of computer technology on women’s status as citizens,

*    the analysis of opportunities and risks of computerised technologies for women’s work in the paid labour force and in domestic spheres,

*    the analysis of gender perspectives in the formative and constructive processes of computers and information systems,

*    the analysis of gender in computing education and educational strategies for girls and women.

WG9.9 ICT and Sustainable Development
est. 2005


*    To contribute to the development of an information society that meets the human needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

*    To be actively involved in the development of ICT applications which involve the goal of sustainable development.

*    To investigate the interactionamong social, environmental and economic issues in the development of ICTs and their applications.

*    To promote worldwide research and practice for further advancement of ICT towards a safe and sustainable self developing World

*    To strengthen inderdisciplinary research efforts in technology assessment for ICTs with a focus on ICT-induced opportunities and risks for the individual, for social systems and for the global ecosystem.

*    To provide a platform for presenting and discussing emerging ideas and trends in the intersection of the topics 'information society' and 'sustainable development'.

*    To promote or support the organization of meetings as well as easy access to high-quality data, information and knowledge in this area and related areas.


*    To create a network of experts working on ICT applications or implications related to sustainable development

*    To support the coordination of policies related to information society issues with policies related to sustanable development

*    To support applications of ICT for global environmental and development issues

*    To facilitate research assessing the environmental and health impacts

            a) of ICT hardware life cycles; production, use, recycling and final disposal
            b) of ICT applications with respect to the resource efficiency of processes they influence
            c) of ICT-induced long-term changes of consumption patterns or lifestyles.

*    To promote the communication between computer professionals and other experts on relationships between ICT and sustainable development

*    To promote prospective studies to disseminate early warnings on consequences of applications of ICT that could compromise the goal of sustainable development, and encourage the development of strategies to ensure that ICT applications will contribute to sustainable development.


WG9.10 ICT Uses in Peace and War
est. 2013


The aim of this working group is to focus the efforts of academia and research institutions, industry, governments, civic society, and the military to promote creative thinking in this field and to encourage viable solutions to so-far unanswered questions. This group will encourage dialogue by providing a platform for the presentation of research papers, current research or the result of research in progress, case studies, use cases, lessons learned, and risk assessment/impact assessment.


The scope of the working group includes any aspects that pertain to how ICT may influence, affect, or threaten individuals, society or nations in relation to either war or peace, as well as how these concerns are perceived by these three levels of grouping (persons, society or nations).

The following themes are all relevant in terms of their orientation in their use in war and peace. The items which are listed in alphabetic order do not reflect the eventual prioritization of the subjects to be covered:

*    Cyber warfare

*    Cyber security awareness

*    Forensic applications and solutions

*    Governance and standards

*    Hacking, cracking and other technical challenges

*    ICT, critical infrastructure and society

*    Social aspects of critical infrastructure protection

*    ICT strategies from a holistic, peaceful, and humane perspective

*    ICT uses to prevent conflicts and contribute to peace

*    ICT uses from a military perspective

*    Legal, ethical and social issues related to information security

*    Promotion of democratic practices through ICT uses

*    Social networking

*    Socio-technical aspects of ICT uses in peace and war

*    Strategic information security

*    Vulnerability assessments

*    Research and education on the impact of ICT in peace and war

While it is anticipated that this working group will build associations with other working groups in TC9, and possibly with working groups in TC11 or TC3, it is also feasible that it could become associated with work undertaken by such international and national associations as the International Telecommunications Union, United Nations and UNESCO.