Digital technologies, data and innovation

This research theme aims to help leverage digital technologies, data and innovation for change towards social and environmental justice in a prosperous world.


Digitalisation, datafication and rapid innovation are transforming our societies. They offer opportunities and risks, including the risk of uneven access and unequal say in how our digital futures are designed and regulated.  

Our work in the Digital Technologies, Data and Innovation (DDI) Research Theme aims to help leverage these for change towards social justice and global sustainable development. 

Collectively, we do this through excellent research and by supporting our people, staff and students, to develop as responsible leaders in this transformative field.  Our group unites 20 staff members and PhD students from 12 departments at the University of Sheffield, including the Information School, Engineering, Journalism,  Geography, Urban Studies and Planning, Health, Education, East Asian Studies and Management. 

Members of our theme are involved in the interdisciplinary ICT4D communities of the ICTD Conference series, ACM working group IFIP 9.4 as well as the International Social Innovation Research Conference (ISIRC). Sheffield is a key partner orgnisation in ICT4DNorth, the network of ICT4D researchers in the North of England (co-chair Dr Pamela Abbott). We work with partners including Asikana Network for women in IT, Oxfam’s IT in Programme, GSMA, UNCTAD and Unicef.    

We come together for our regular Research Roundtables, seminars and workshops. If you would like to find out more, please contact Theme Lead Prof Dorothea Kleine.