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22nd Berlin Colloquium
The Internet and Mental Health – Research Beyond Fear of Technology and Lack of Concern

 
 

April 25, 2018
10.30 - 18.00 Uhr
Karl Storz Visitor and Training Center, Berlin

Brochure

Pioneering technical developments have changed not only our everyday routine and habits, but also our perceptions and feelings – and consequently human existence itself. Never before has there been such long and intensive discussion of the effects of a technological development on mental health as after the introduction of the Internet. This discussion pervades all parts of society – from elaborate feature articles to the new media and to families’ kitchen tables.
Pioneering technical developments have changed not only our everyday routine and habits, but also our perceptions and feelings – and consequently human existence itself. Never before has there been such long and intensive discussion of the effects of a technological development on mental health as after the introduction of the Internet. This discussion pervades all parts of society – from elaborate feature articles to the new media and to families’ kitchen tables.

In an interdisciplinary cooperation between the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy of Charité – University Medicine Berlin, the Department of Communication of the University of Münster, and the International Center Ethics in the Sciences and Humanities of the University of Tübingen, the Ladenburg Research Cluster “Internet and Mental Health” has since early 2016 been conducting extensive research into the connections between different forms of Internet use and mental well-being. Besides the pure effects of Internet use, these investigations have already brought to light a more fundamental principle: Technological progress is often met with either euphoria or skepticism – but seldom with rationality. This is directly linked to the social changes of the modern era: the new liberties and the loss of solidity and structure.

At the Berlin Colloquium on April 25, 2018, researchers and thinkers from various disciplines of the humanities and natural sciences investigated this connection more closely. Social reactions to technical innovations were discussed and placed in a larger context. The decisive question is how to deal with technological progress at a time when developments are progressing so rapidly that it is almost impossible to thoroughly examine each and every one of them before they find widespread use. The objective of the event was to offer suggestions as to what such a procedure could look like in future, and what role must be played by scientists, politicians, and representatives of industry. In addition to the lectures and discussions, artistic installations made the technical and social developments under discussion more experienceable and encouraged the visitors to participate.

Scientific director:
Dr. Jan Kalbitzer, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Charité Berlin

Speakers:
Dr. Mazda Adli, Outpatient Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, Fliedner Clinic
Jens Bergmann, brand eins
Kathrin Passig, publicist
Prof. Dr. Felix Stalder, Zurich University of the Arts

Supported by: