Taxonomy of Identity, Anonymity and Pseudonymity

Taxonomy of Identity, Anonymity and Pseudonymity
This WP relates to the jointly executed research activity “Identity of Identity” and
simultaneously delivers results in the shape of an NoE-wide understanding and wording
for identity concepts. As the first joint research activity it can be seen as the initial object
of practice for the following research activities.
Workpackage number
Activity type
Participant id and PM
Start date or starting event:
Other specific activity
5 (1,5PM), 2 (1PM), 4 (1,5PM), 6 (1PM), 10 (1PM), 11
(1PM), 20 (2PM)
The objective of this Workpackage is to answer the question, what identity, anonymity and
pseudonymity is about according to the different perspectives of the FIDIS participants.
These perspectives will be embrace the main significant disciplines for which identity,
anonymity and pseudonymity make sense such as technological, legal, economical, social, or
psychology, and a pluri-disciplirarity approach will be encouraged (facilitating a global
perspective, rather than a very specialized and narrow view of the problem). The target
audience of this work will include the researchers, the students, the knowledge workers of
public and commercial organizations, as well as the citizen. The objective is to make them
aware of the many different dimensions of identity and their complexity, as well as to
provide them a starting point and a reference point for working in this domain, as well as a
common terminology that can be used across the different disciplines.
The scope of this work will principally be focussed on the definition of the semantic of these
concepts, their usage, and their implication for the individual, the group and the society. This
scope will in particular define what is identity, anonymity and pseudonymity and what are
the main issues (“the What”), and to a lesser extend how to address them (“the How”).
Note: In the later case, the question of how to address the means of managing identity will
mainly consist a survey about current ID systems & standards for identity representation,
authentication, protection and interchange and the approaches they are using. More technical
investigation will be done in other workpackages.
The answer to this question will include both formal and less-formal elements such as:
 The definition of terms (taxonomy & ontology).
 The inventory of work and approaches in these different domains (theories, or
empirical work, standards for identity representation and definition, ).
 The identification and the sharing of illustrative scenarios and experiences.
Description of work
Several means will be used to aggregate, and synthesis the information that will be used:
 A thematic workshop on the concept of identity. This workshop, that will represent
the mid-term consolidation meeting of this workpackage, will help to consolidate and
validate the work already completed in this workpackage, and will exploit the
findings to define the orientation for concept of identity, anonymity and
pseudonymity. This workshop will in particular provide the stakeholders of this
workpackages the opportunity to to "expose & share" in real time their conception
and experiences related to the concept of identity, anonymity and pseudonymity, and
to define the direction for future work in these domains. It will also help to ensure
that the work accomplished is being "transmitted" by the other workpackages of
Fidis, and more generally by the communities of people interested by identity issues.
 The communication infrastructure of the NoE (collaborative portal + mailing list +
simple database mechanisms). It will be used to collect and structure definitions and
experiences (scenarios) related to identity, anonymity and pseudonymity, as well as
to support and stimulate the dynamic of interaction amongst the partners. This
communication process will be “supported” by the –informal- assignment of roles to
some of the participants (moderator, cybrarian, etc.).
 Editorial work (creating reports that aggregate the work of others)
Besides, several approaches will be used to collect and structure the content:
 The relatively formal definition of terms.
 The inventory of existing work.
 The identification of scenarios and experience (collecting & presenting more tacit
 D2.1: Inventory of topics and clusters to provide a conceptual framework for
discussion, analysis and information retrieval
 D2.2: A set of use cases and scenarios, presenting the use and the issues of Identity,
Anonymity and Pseudonomity in different contexts
 D2.3: An identification of generic user models that can be used as a starting point
to design more specific user
 D.2.4: Thematic workshop on identity
 M2.1: Work on WP2 has been started
 M2.2: A common understanding of the most important terms related to the
concept of identity is available (the definition of each term will need to have to
reached a consensus amongst the community of researchers), work on WP2 has