Hasso-Plattner-InstitutSDG am HPI
Hasso-Plattner-InstitutDSG am HPI

Ethics, Law and Compliance (Wintersemester 2023/2024)

Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Dennis-Kenji Kipker

General Information

  • Weekly Hours: 2
  • Credits: 3
  • Graded: yes
  • Enrolment Deadline: 01.10.23 - 22.10.2023
  • Examination time §9 (4) BAMA-O: 03.02.2024
  • Teaching Form: Vorlesung (Block)
  • Enrolment Type: Compulsory Module
  • Course Language: English
  • Maximum number of participants: 30

Programs, Module Groups & Modules

Data Engineering MA
Software Systems Engineering MA
  • Software Systems Engineering
    • HPI-SSE-EL Ethics, Law and Compliance
Cybersecurity MA
IT-Systems Engineering MA


On the one hand, the development of software can be a creative process, but on the other hand, this is accompanied by considerable responsibility for the end product for both the developer and the manufacturer. This responsibility is reflected above all in legal compliance requirements. For example, privacy by design and privacy by default must be implemented even before the development process begins, or data security measures must be considered and implemented. Legal issues in an international context are also relevant, since data flows of any kind have ceased to stop at territorial borders and foreign legal provisions sometimes have a considerable extraterritorial effect. In addition, the question arises which measures disruptive software technologies require from developers and companies and how these can be implemented (also by law).

These and other topics will be addressed and jointly examined in the lecture "Ethics, Law and Compliance" against the background of the regulatory horizon. The question is which concrete legal requirements the developer can be confronted with in the context of programming on the one hand, and on the other hand, which requirements have not yet been translated into concrete legal obligations, but could be taken into account in the context of foresighted action in technology development. The focus will be on discussion and exchange, and legal issues will be addressed on the basis of several examples.


No previous experience is necessary.


  • Spiecker gen. Döhmann/Papakonstantinou/Hornung/Hert, General Data Protection Regulation, Nomos 2022
  • International Cybersecurity Law Review (ICLR), Springer (journal)
  • Brunton, Data-Driven Science and Engineering: Machine Learning, Dynamical Systems, and Control, Cambridge University Press 2019


The teaching language is English. The course is divided into different theoretical parts on the respective thematic focal points, and is supplemented by joint exercises and interactive group discussions.


In the first course date, students will be introduced to various topics, each of which will be the subject of module presentation and module final paper. For each chosen topic, the module presentation is to be prepared in a small group during the lecture period, which is presented and discussed with the other participants at the end of the series of events. Based on the content-related fundamentals and the feedback on the module presentation, the module final papers on the same topic are then prepared independently in the small groups. The module presentation and the final term paper will each be weighted with 50% of the overall grade of the course.


  • 09./10.12.2023 and 03./04.02.2024
  • Hours: 10:00 to 17:00 on each of the above dates
  • 03. and 04.02.2024 (presentations)
  • Room: H-E.51/52