How Accountability is Implemented and Understood in Research Tools

A Systematic Mapping Study
  • Severin KaciankaEmail author
  • Kristian Beckers
  • Florian Kelbert
  • Prachi Kumari
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10611)


[Context/Background]: With the increasing use of cyber-physical systems in complex socio-technical setups, mechanisms that hold specific entities accountable for safety and security incidents are needed. Although there exist models that try to capture and formalize accountability concepts, many of these lack practical implementations. We hence know little about how accountability mechanisms work in practice and how specific entities could be held responsible for incidents. [Goal]: As a step towards the practical implementation of providing accountability, this systematic mapping study investigates existing implementations of accountability concepts with the goal to (1) identify a common definition of accountability and (2) identify the general trend of practical research. [Method]: To survey the literature for existing implementations, we conducted a systematic mapping study. [Results]: We thus contribute by providing a systematic overview of current accountability realizations and requirements for future accountability approaches. [Conclusions]: We find that existing practical accountability research lacks a common definition of accountability in the first place. The research field seems rather scattered with no generally accepted architecture and/or set of requirements. While most accountability implementations focus on privacy and security, no safety-related approaches seem to exist. Furthermore, we did not find excessive references to relevant and related concepts such as reasoning, log analysis and causality.


Accountability Tools Literature review Survey Systematic mapping study 



This work was funded in part by the Munich Center for Internet Research and the TUM Living Lab Connected Mobility (TUM LLCM) project which has been funded by the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology (StMWi) through the Center Digitisation. Bavaria, an initiative of the Bavarian State Government.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Severin Kacianka
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kristian Beckers
    • 2
  • Florian Kelbert
    • 3
  • Prachi Kumari
    • 4
  1. 1.Technical University of MunichMunichGermany
  2. 2.SiemensMunichGermany
  3. 3.Imperial College LondonLondonEngland
  4. 4.MunichGermany

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