A Social Cyber Contract Theory Model for Understanding National Cyber Strategies

Raymond Bierens, Bram Klievink, Jan van den Berg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
154 Downloads (Pure)


Today’s increasing connectivity creates cyber risks at personal, organizational up to societal level. Societal cyber risks require mitigation by all kinds of actors where government should take the lead due to its responsibility to protect its citizens. Since no formal global governance exists, the governmental responsibility should start at the national level of every country. To achieve successful management of global cyber risks, appropriate alignment between these sovereignly developed strategies is required, which concerns a complex challenge. To create alignment, getting insight into differences between national cyber strategies, is the first step. This, in turn, requires an appropriate analysis approach that helps to identify the key differences. In this article, we introduce such an analysis approach based on social contract theory. The resulting analysis model consists of both a direct and an indirect type of social cyber contract between governments, citizens and corporations, within and between sovereign nations. To show its effectiveness, the proposed social cyber contract model is validated through an illustrated case examining various constitutional rights to privacy, their embedding in the national cyber strategies and how their differences could cause potential barriers for alignment across sovereignties.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of International Conference on Electronic Government 2017
PublisherSpringer Science
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-64677-0
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-64676-3
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event16th IFIP WG 8.5 International Conference, EGOV 2017: International Conference on Electronic Government - petersburg, Russian Federation
Duration: 4 Sep 20177 Sep 2017

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science


Conference16th IFIP WG 8.5 International Conference, EGOV 2017
Country/TerritoryRussian Federation


  • National cyber strategy
  • Social contract
  • Privacy
  • Cyber security
  • National security
  • Cyber risk


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