: a multifaceted, multilayered analysis of the concept of data : a qualitative approach

  • Lukas Julian Franz Stratmann (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Data is becoming ever more important in the modern world. Phrases such as “data-driven
world” “data society” or “data economy” are common. However, when talking about data there is general confusion as to what this abstract concept refers to specifically and what it means for different perspectives, for companies as data users in contrast to private people or end-users. The purpose of this study was a multifaceted multilayered analysis of “data''.To have a better command on this topic and focus research, four aspects of particular relevance to data have been determined: the potentiality, the economical worth, arguments for the debate on the ownership and, the effects of the legal framework for data. These four aspects were guiding the author in determining the significance of data for two perspectives. This prompts the research question: What is data to the end user and to companies, considering potential, legal,economic and proprietary aspects? To answer the research question, a theoretical framework highlighting each of the four aspects, contrasting between companies and private persons, was established. In an effort to not only have theoretical findings but rather real life practical statements an empirical qualitative study was constructed. Firstly a questionnaire consisting of 19 questions separated by four parts was designed, each part corresponding to one of the aspects. Next a diverse group of 15 participants was recruited and were asked for their expert opinions in regards to their companies´ perspectives and their perceived user perspective. Analysis was done with the help of MAXQDA software following the structured content analysis by Kuckartz (2018). Starkly contrasting viewpoints for aspects such as potential and legal framework could be identified, prevalent confusion and indifference about data for private people can be confirmed with this research. Additionally, recommendations were formulated on the basis of the expert interviews.
Date of Award7 Dec 2022
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorDaniel Fernandes (Supervisor)


  • Data
  • Privacy
  • digital currency
  • Ownership
  • Legal framework


  • Mestrado em Psicologia na Gestão e Economia

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