Web Futures: Inclusive, Intelligent, Sustainable The 2020 Manifesto for Web Science (Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshop 18262)

Authors Bettina Berendt , Fabien Gandon , Susan Halford , Wendy Hall , Jim Hendler , Katharina E. Kinder-Kurlanda , Eirini Ntoutsi , Steffen Staab

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Bettina Berendt
  • TU Berlin and Weizenbaum Institute for the Networked Society, Germany
  • KU Leuven, Belgium
Fabien Gandon
  • Inria, Université Côte d’Azur, CNRS, I3S, France
Susan Halford
  • University of Bristol, UK
Wendy Hall
  • University of Southampton, UK
Jim Hendler
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA
Katharina E. Kinder-Kurlanda
  • University of Klagenfurt, Austria
Eirini Ntoutsi
  • Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
Steffen Staab
  • Universität Stuttgart, Germany, and University of Southampton, UK


The authors of this Manifesto are greatly indebted to the co-participants of the Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshop. We also appreciate the support and patience that Dr. Kunz and the team at Dagstuhl had with us when we took much longer than planned in putting together this Manifesto.

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Bettina Berendt, Fabien Gandon, Susan Halford, Wendy Hall, Jim Hendler, Katharina E. Kinder-Kurlanda, Eirini Ntoutsi, and Steffen Staab. Web Futures: Inclusive, Intelligent, Sustainable The 2020 Manifesto for Web Science (Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshop 18262). In Dagstuhl Manifestos, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp. 1-42, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2021)


This Manifesto was produced from the Perspectives Workshop 18262 entitled "10 Years of Web Science" that took place at Schloss Dagstuhl from June 24 – 29, 2018. At the Workshop, we revisited the origins of Web Science, explored the challenges and opportunities of the Web, and looked ahead to potential futures for both the Web and Web Science. We explain issues that society faces in the Web by the ambivalences that are inherent in the Web. All the enormous benefits that the Web offers - for information sharing, collective organization and distributed activity, social inclusion and economic growth - will always carry along negative consequences, too, and 30 years after its creation negative consequences of the Web are only too apparent. The Web continues to evolve and its next major step will involve Artificial Intelligence (AI) at large. AI has the potential to amplify positive and negative outcomes, and we explore these possibilities, situating them within the wider debate about the future of regulation and governance for the Web. Finally, we outline the need to extend Web Science as the science that is devoted to the analysis and engineering of the Web, to strengthen our role in shaping the future of the Web and present five key directions for capacity building that are necessary to achieve this: (i), supporting interdisciplinarity, (ii), supporting collaboration, (iii), supporting the sustainable Web, (iv), supporting the Intelligent Web, and (v), supporting the Inclusive Web. Our writing reflects our background in several disciplines of the social and technical sciences and that these disciplines emphasize topics to various extents. We are acutely aware that our observations occupy a particular point in time and are skewed towards our experience as Western scholars - a limitation that Web Science will need to overcome.

Subject Classification

ACM Subject Classification
  • Information systems → World Wide Web
  • Human-centered computing → Collaborative and social computing theory, concepts and paradigms
  • Computing methodologies → Philosophical/theoretical foundations of artificial intelligence
  • Social and professional topics → History of computing
  • Social and professional topics → Censorship
  • Social and professional topics → Surveillance
  • Social and professional topics → Network access control
  • Web Science
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Web Governance
  • Capacity Building


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