Laura Kocksch


I am interested in the way IT security combines material practices of tinkering, contestion and experimentation as transgressive infrastructuring and the moralizations and sociality of IT security alike. In ethnographic studies of industry companies I investigate the ways IT security is established in technological, social and collaborative ways. Introducing the notion of care, displaced from feminist accounts of neglected work, I describe the material practices, moral registers and configurations of accountability involved in "doing" IT security in practice. Questioning the politics involved in knowing and doing IT Security I suggest intervening in IT security as a matter of care. In my dissertation I conducted ethnographic research to undestand the relation of IT security and data science practices. Here, IT security is a way of knowing data and establishing trust and accountability in larger re-configurations of data accountabilities.



November 2016 - April 2020:
PhD Program/ NRW Fortschrittskolleg "SecHuman" – Security for people in cyberspace. Title of dissertation: “Big data - IT security in practice”

April 2016:
Master of arts cultural anthropology/ European ethnology and computer science and sociology, title of thesis: “Computer scientists start counting at 0.” How epistemic cultures come together. Four cooperation projects.

August 2012:
Bachelor of arts cultural anthropology/ European ethnology and political science, title of thesis: “Facebook-localism. New concepts of place through software based presence in social network sites (SNS).”


Universitätsstr. 150
44801 Bochum
GD 1/179 / Postfach 80
Phone +49 (0)234 32 27949


Office hours: by arrangement.

Research Areas

Science & Technology Studies Technoscience Data Security Privacy


  • Laura Kocksch, Andreas Poller. 2019. The Practice Turn in IT Security - An Interdisciplinary Approach. In David, Klaus, Geihs, Kurt, Lange, Martin & Stumme, Gerd (Hrsg.), INFORMATIK 2019: 50 Jahre Gesellschaft für Informatik – Informatik für Gesellschaft. Bonn: Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V.. (S. 97-98). 
  • Laura Kocksch, Matthias Korn, Andreas Poller, and Susann Wagenknecht. 2018. Caring for IT Security: Accountabilities, Moralities, and Oscillations in IT Security Practices. Proc. ACM Hum.-Comput. Interact. 2, CSCW, Article 92 (November 2018), 20 pages. DOI:

  • Poller, Andreas, Laura Kocksch, Sven Türpe, Felix Anand Epp, and Katharina Kinder-Kurlanda. "Can Security Become a Routine?: A Study of Organizational Change in an Agile Software Development Group." In Proceedings of the 2017 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, pp. 2489-2503. ACM, 2017. <

  • Poller, Andreas, Laura Kocksch. “Breaking New Ground for Researching Secure Software Development with Social Theory”. In Proceedings of the 2017 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, Workshop Theory Transfer Social Theory in CSCW.

  • Poller, Andreas, Laura Kocksch, Katharina Kinder-Kurlanda, and Felix Anand Epp. "First-time Security Audits as a Turning Point?: Challenges for Security Practices in an Industry Software Development Team." In Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp. 1288-1294. ACM, 2016

  • Türpe, Sven, Laura Kocksch, and Andreas Poller. "Penetration Tests a Turning Point in Security Practices? Organizational Challenges and Implications in a Software Development Team." In Twelfth Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS 2016). USENIX Association, 2016.

  • Poller, Andreas, Petra Ilyes, Andreas Kramm, and Laura Kocksch. "Investigating OSN users' privacy strategies with in-situ observation." In Proceedings of the companion publication of the 17th ACM conference on Computer supported cooperative work & social computing, pp. 217-220. ACM, 2014.