Researcher Biography

Charlie Harry Smith is a philosopher and political theorist pursuing a doctorate at the Oxford Internet Institute and Balliol College, University of Oxford. He is funded through the ESRC’s Grand Union Doctoral Training Partnership and is currently being supervised by Professors Victoria Nash and Helen Margetts.

Charlie’s research considers the normative and theoretical issues emerging at the intersection of digital identities and digital government. In particular, he investigates the UK Government’s ongoing engagement with the private sector to develop federated digital identity systems.

He holds an MSc in Political Theory from the London School of Economics and a BA (Hons) in Philosophy from Durham University, which included a year studying abroad at the University of Hong Kong.

Research Interests: digital identity, digital government, federated identity, national ID cards

Publications and Conferences

Book Chapters

Smith, C. H. (2020). ‘Corporatised Identities ≠ Digital Identities: Algorithmic Identities, Social Media, and their Harmful Impacts for Autonomy and Well-Being’ in L. Floridi & C. Burr (eds.) Ethics of Digital Well-being: A Multidisciplinary Approach. Springer. [Forthcoming].

Undergraduate Journal Articles

Smith, C. H. (2018). ‘The Tesla Problem: Trolleys, Proximity, and Duty’. Ephemeris, (5): 22-32. [Available online].

Smith, C. H. (2018). ‘Do Companies Treat Their Employees Merely as Means to Ends? Kantian business ethics and the case of workplace surveillance’. Dialectic, VXII (1):1-8. [Available online].

Smith, C. (2017). Orwellian Nationalism as the Liberal Democratic Convention. Critique, (4):31-39. [Available online].


  • Presented ‘Corporatised Identities ≠ Digital Identities’ at ‘Futures Thinking’ (2019, Oxford)
  • Presented ‘Moral Surveillance? Democratic Discourse and the Habermasian Critique of Untargeted Mass Surveillance’ at the ‘LSE Undergraduate Political Review’ (2018, London)
  • Presented ‘The Tesla Problem: Trolleys, Proximity, and Duty’ at the ‘Southampton Undergraduate Philosophy Conference’ (2018, Southampton)
  • Presented ‘Orwellian Nationalism as the Liberal Democratic Convention’ at the ‘Durham Philosophy Society’s Undergraduate Conference’ (2017, Durham)
  • Attended ‘The Ethics and Politics of Online Interaction’ (2019, Oxford)
  • Attended ‘Privacy in the New Public Sphere, its Value and its Threats’ (2018, London)
  • Attended ‘Tracking People: Looking to the Future’ (2017, Leeds/London)
  • Attended ‘Worldwide Symposium and Roundtable on Confucian Political Philosophy’ (2017, HKU)