Metadata in the Networked Society

Auditorium, Kenneth Myer Building 30 Royal Parade, Parkville The University of Melbourne


More Information

Fiorella Chiodo

T: +61 3 8344 6713


Public Forum: Thursday 14 May 2015

This public forum aims to critically examine the concept of metadata and its potential advantages and disadvantages in fashioning the networked society. The forum will bring together a panel to define metadata, explore its uses and probe its limitations.

Public Launch of MNSI

The forum provides an opportunity to officially launch the Institute. The Melbourne Networked Society Institute will be officially launched by the Hon Adem Somyurek, Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade.

About Metadata

Metadata refers to information about data as opposed to the data itself. Recent debate in Australia has focused on the Commonwealth's metadata retention scheme – attracting vocal and robust commentary from a number of quarters. However, retention for potential use by law enforcement agencies is only one application for metadata.

Many applications can make use of metadata. It is particularly useful in the aggregate, supporting the development of innovative services. In a networked society, it is metadata that powers connectivity and is essential to the emerging Internet of Things. Examples include the ability to monitor and manage the flow of people and traffic in a city based on mobile phone metadata, and supporting network planning through the accurate mapping of demand. Yet these benefits must be balanced as the increased use, aggregation and access to metadata presents concerns relating to security, privacy and potential for misuse.


Peter Leonard, Gilbert + Tobin and Director, iappANZ – Mandatory Internet Data Retention in Australia – Looking the horse in the mouth after it has bolted, May 2015 (pdf: 1.3MB)

Peter Leonard, Gilbert + Tobin and Director, iappANZ – Going grey reasonably privately, March 2015 (pdf: 132KB)

Forum Details

Date: Thursday 14 May 2015
Time: 5:00pm to 6:30pm, followed by refreshments.
Venue: Auditorium, Kenneth Myer Building, the University of Melbourne, 30 Royal Parade Parkville


This event is booked out.