Current Project

DaPIS – an ontology-based Data Protection Icon Set

The CIRSFID (University of Bologna, IT), in collaboration with the Academy of Fine Arts of Bologna and Società Italiana Informatica Giuridica (SIIG), has developed DaPIS, a Data Protection Icon Set representing: (1) data processing operations and processed data (e.g., anonymized data, encrypted data), (2) purposes of the processing (e.g., marketing purposes, scientific purposes), (3) legal bases for the processing (e.g., legal obligation, consent), (4) agents and roles (e.g., data subject, data controller, supervisory authority), (5) rights of data subjects (e.g., right to access, right to erasure, right to data portability).

Selection of concepts

DaPIS’ concepts have been selected following Artt. 13-14 GDPR and have been integrated with additional important concepts, formalized in the computational ontology PrOnto. The ontological foundation was instrumental for the creation of a machine-readable icon set (as provided by the GDPR), namely an iconic language whose elements have computer-interpretable meanings that are explicitly and formally defined in the ontology. With the provision of XML mark-up to the linguistic expressions in documents, applications can semi-automatically retrieve and display the icons encoded in the ontology next to the relevant chunks of text in the document.


Prof. Monica Palmirani:
Arianna Rossi:

Most relevant publications:

  • Rossi, A., and Palmirani, M., (2020). Can Visual Design Provide Legal Transparency? The Challenges for Successful Implementation of Icons for Data Protection. Design Issues Volume 36 | Issue 3 | Summer 2020 (p.82-96).
  • Rossi, A., and Palmirani, M., (2019). DaPIS: an Ontology-Based Data Protection Icon Set. In G. Peruginelli & S. Faro (Eds.): Knowledge of the Law in the Big Data Age. Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence and Applications. Vol. 317. IOS Press. ISBN: 978-1-61499-984-3 (print) | 978-1-61499-985-0 (online).

Contact Arianna Rossi to receive a copy of the publications.

Further project description and relevant publications are available here