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Photo of Katja De Vries

Ekaterina De Vries

Affiliated Researcher


Katja de Vries is a postdoctoral legal researcher and philosopher of technology. Currently she is working on CRE-AI. CRE-AI is a two year postdoc project (Sociology of Law, Univeristy of Lund, Sweden, Feb 2019-2021) on the legal and societal implications of so-called creative or generative Artificial Intelligence, notably Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs). By blurring the distinction between fake and real ('deepfakes'), and its capacity to compose convincing new variations on existing patterns, generative AI challenges what we can believe to be true, what creativity is, and the security of any system running on AI. CREA-AI explores the perils and promises of the recent breakthroughs in the field of generative AI. The project also looks at how the outputs of (unsupervised) generative AI could impact on fairness, accountability and transparency problems arising from (supervised) classificatory AI.

In October 2016 Katja de Vries defended her PhD thesis "Machine learning/Informational fundamental rights. Makings of sameness and difference" (available upon request). She has published on a wide range of legal and philosophical topics and has co-edited ‘Privacy, Due Process and the Computational Turn’ (Routledge, 2013). Prior to her doctoral research she studied at Sciences Po in Paris, obtained three masters degrees with distinction at Leiden University (Civil Law, Cognitive Psychology and Philosophy) and graduated at Oxford University (Magister Juris).

De Vries's main research interest are the challenges posed by machine learning to privacy, data protection, antidiscrimination and intellectual property law. Further fields of expertise include: philosophy of technology, legal theory, and science and technology studies (STS). She has taught the advanced BA-course “Law, Ethics and Politics” at the law faculty of Saint-Louis University (Brussels, Belgium) and the MSc-course 'Critical Big Data Management' at the IT University of Copenhagen (Denmark).

In 2018-2019 De Vries was affiliated as a postdoc to the Technologies in Practice research group (Department of Business IT, IT University of Copenhagen). De Vries has participated in several European (FP6, FP7 and H2020) interdisciplinary research projects. In 2014-2016 she was affiliated to the Institute for Computing and Information Sciences (iCIS) in the Computer Science Department at the Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen (the Netherlands) and worked as a full-time researcher on the USEMP project. The project resulted in the DataBait transparency tool that showed users of social networks which sensitive and commercially interesting information can be derived from their data. De Vries has also been an active member of the European “Living in Surveillance Societies”-network, and has contributed with her research to three other topical EU projects: FIDIS (exploring the future of identity in the information society), SIAM (creating a decision support tool for the acquisition of security technologies in public transportation sites in alignment with ethical and legal requirements), and CANDID (Checking Assumptions aND promoting responsibility In smart Development projects).


Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Pleinlaan 2
1050 Brussels