Chris Piallat: digital consultant to the Green Party in the German Bundestag

Chris Piallat, consultant for Network and Digital Policy of the Green Parliamentary Group in the German Bundestag

Chris Piallat doesn’t actually have time for an interview. That’s because the coalition negotiations currently underway are taking up almost all of his energy. One committee meeting follows the next. Each of the 22 specialist negotiating groups had to finalize its proposal for the text of the coalition agreement by November 10th, in other words, in just two and a half weeks. Ambitious, but the parties were well-prepared for this moment and made the most of every minute. The Greens are particularly committed, the digitization expert says with a wink: “We’re always the nerds!”

Chris Piallat works for the “Digital Innovation and Digital Infrastructure” working group of the Green Party’s parliamentary group in the Bundestag, but he also talks to many colleagues from other specialist groups. Digitalization is a cross-cutting topic, explains the 37-year-old: “Domestic policy is concerned with IT security and data protection as a civil right. In the economic sphere, the focus is on the promotion of start-ups and the modernization of competition law. Technology policy talks revolve around research and innovation. And all parties involved see a particularly great need for action on how both state and administration can be modernized by digital means.”

Chris Piallat is not allowed to reveal more about the coalition negotiations. What is clear, however, is that he is particularly concerned about sociopolitical issues of digitalization. And these must also be answered at the European level, explains the political scientist: “On the one hand, we need a regulatory framework such as the Digital Services Act, which should apply to all platforms that exist on the European market – from Facebook to employment services. And on the other hand, we need to promote certain technologies and innovations at the European level.”

Whether in his private life or at work, Chris Piallat likes to use a wide variety of sources, from Twitter to media of major publishing houses, to keep himself well-informed. “In times of growing disinformation, I make it a point to assess information alertly and critically,” he says. It is also particularly important to the Berlin family man that everyone has constant access to as much and as diverse information as possible. That is why he already devoted himself to copyright law during his studies.

So it is no wonder that his recently published book “The Value of Digitization. Common Good in the Digital World” (Der Wert der Digitalisierung. Gemeinwohl in der digitalen Welt) was published under an open-access license. Chris Piallat explains: “This is also a way to draw attention to a publication – with the goal that many people will eventually buy the book. But more important than revenue for me personally is the idea that I want to make the knowledge gathered in the book as accessible as possible.” Janna Degener-Storr


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