About the Center for Digital Welfare

The Center for Digital Welfare is a research center at the IT University of Copenhagen with researchers from all three university departments. The CDW researchers come together in working with questions related to the digitalization of the welfare society.

The CDW’s strategic direction is formed by a management team with Irina Papazu as Head of Center, Kitt Plinia Nielsen as Strategic Project Manager (currently on maternity leave) and Line Nykjær Johansen as substitute Strategic Project Manager.

Furthermore, the CDW consists of three working groups with the themes The Agile State led by Associate Professor Irina PapazuDigital Citizenship led by Associate Professor Sisse Finken, and Future of Work and Well-Being led by Associate Professor Louise Harder Fischer. Each of the CDW working groups consists of up to ten members, who come together several times per semester to engage in research activities and projects both with and without the CDW’s stakeholders.

In the following, you will find a concise introduction to each working group.


Working Group 1: The Agile State

led by Associate Professor Irina Papazu (irpa@itu.dk)


This working group focuses on the changes taking place in the public sector as it engages in digitalization processes. We focus on digitalization at the state level, understood as the governmental apparatus of political decision-making and the central administration's technical-bureaucratic layers.

We are intrigued by pursuing questions about the mutual construction of digitalization processes and politics, bureaucracy, statehood and private sector influences.

The working group studies implications of the ever-closer relationship between the public and the private sector – not least exemplified by introducing agile methods into the state procedures  - and analyzes the consequences for longstanding democratic values, such as trust, transparency, and public deliberation.

We offer empirical and conceptual answers to questions about the effects and implications of these new departures of the digitalized and digitalizing state. Creating knowledge about how digitalization reconfigures the state and vice versa is crucial in the conversation about the future of the welfare state.


See members of The Agile State working group here.


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Working Group 2: Digital Citizenship

led by Associate Professor Sisse Finken (sisf@itu.dk)


This working group focuses on the subject positions or ‘bodies’ that come into being through the digital technologies put in place to deliver welfare. We explore how ’citizenship’ and ’welfare’ are being configured and transformed through new technological imaginaries and digitalization practices.

We are particularly interested in the implications of digitalization for ‘vulnerable populations’ – or how new technological initiatives may produce both new abilities and vulnerabilities. We explore the role of digital technologies in different domains such as aging, disability and healthcare, and pervasive ideas and policy discourses such as active citizenship, citizen science and security.

We offer critical perspectives on digital welfare by tracing its implications for citizenship and exploring the effects – both social, material and affective - on the people and practices affected by the increasing digitalization of the welfare society and the conjoint demands of becoming digital citizens.


See members of the Digital Citizenship working group here.
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Working Group 3: Future of Work and Well-Being

led by Associate Professor Louise Harder Fischer (louf@itu.dk)


Under the sway of digital and generative technologies, the nature of work and jobs is changing rapidly. The Future of Work working group’s overarching interest is to understand how to promote well-being and quality of life as fundamental aspects as digitalization and new technologies are transforming work, working lives and the society we live in.

The working group seeks to promote a deeper sociotechnical understanding of the interdependent relationship between humans and technology, to advance societal needs by providing knowledge for developing and designing intelligent technologies that operate in harmony with human workers, and explore ways of mitigating potential risks including inequity arising from working at the human-technology frontier. 

The working group will conduct multi-disciplinary research in collaboration with industry to sustain economic competitiveness, promote worker well-being and quality of life, and illuminate and problematize the emerging social and economic consequences of the technological innovations shaping the future of jobs and workplaces. 

The group’s research combines perspectives, methods, and knowledge from design, information systems, computer science, economics, and the social sciences in pursuit of a deeper understanding of how human needs can be met and values respected in the midst of a fundamental digital and societal transformation.


See members of the Future of Work and Well-Being working group here.