University of Malta

Joseph A. Cannataci

SMART Co-ordinating Person

Joeseph CannataciProfessor Joe Cannataci studied law at the University of Malta and the University of Oslo. He later qualified in the UK as a Chartered Information Technology Professional and also holds Chartered Fellowship of the British Computer Society. He received a Doctor of Laws degree (LLD) from the University of Malta in 1986 with a thesis on privacy and data protection law published by the Norwegian University Press in 1987. Joe was T54 Project Director at the Norwegian Research Center for Computers and Law during 1986-1987 before he joined the Department of Public Law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Malta, where in 1988 he established the Law & IT Research Unit (LITRU). In 2006 he was appointed Professor of Law at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLAN) in the United Kingdom. Between 2006 and 2007 he was Head of Lancashire Law School and from 2007-to 2011 he was Director of the Centre for Law, Information & Converging Technologies at UCLAN. In 2011 he was appointed Head of the Department of Information Policy & Governance at the Faculty of Media & Knowledge Sciences of the University of Malta and also Chair of European Information Policy & Technology Law within the Faculty of Law at the University of Groningen. He is addiitonally Adjunct Professor at the Security Research Centre, School of Computer and Security Science at Edith Cowan University Australia .


In 2010 Joe was External Consultant for the Impact Assessment of policy options for data protection law in Europe contracted by the European Commission to GHK International. During 2010, he was also Expert Consultant engaged by Council of Europe’s Consultative Committee (T-PD) and Directorate for Legal Affairs and Human Rights to review provisions of the European Data Protection Convention and Recommendation (R(87)15 on police use of personal data.

He has written books and articles on data protection law, liability for expert systems, legal aspects of medical informatics, copyright in computer software and co-authored various papers and textbook chapters on self-regulation and the Internet, the EU Constitution and data protection, on-line dispute resolution, data retention and police data.

Joe is a member of the Executive of the British & Irish Law, Education & Technology Association (BILETA), the International Advisory Board of the International Review of Law, Computers & Technology, the Editorial Board of the Masaryk University Journal of Law and Technology and  the Comitato Scientifico della "Rivista di Diritto, Economia e Gestione delle Nuove Tecnologie".


In 2005 he was decorated by the Republic of France and elevated to Officier dans l’ordre des palmes académiques His pioneering role in the development of technology law and especially privacy law was cited as one of the main reasons for his being made the recipient of such an honour as was his contribution to the development of European information policy. In 1993 Joe was Rapporteur on the use of personal data for Police Purposes to the Project Group on Data Protection of the Council of Europe. He was Chairman of several Committees of Experts of the Council of Europe:  MedialLex (1994),  the Working Party on Data Protection in Insurance (1994-1997), Working Party on Data Protection in New technologies (1995-2000), the Committee of Experts on Data Protection (1996-98) and Vice-Chairman of the Group of Specialists on the impact of New Communications Technologies on Fundamental Rights & Democratic Values (1999-2001).


While Joe has been in academic life without a break since 1986, he has also maintained first a part-time presence as an IT lawyer  involved in international practice in the B2B legal aspects of new technologies including drafting and negotiating  IT Project contracts, hardware and software, sales and licensing contracts and various IP-related issues including source code agreements. He is currently a UDRP Panelist of the Czech Arbitration Court where, utilizing On-line Dispute Resolution (ODR) methodologies, he was amongst the first “on-line judges” to deliver decisions in disputes on .eu Top Level Domain names


Noellie Brockdorff

Noellie Brockdorff

Noellie Brockdorff is the Coordinator of the Cognitive Science Unit in the Faculty of Media and Knowledge Sciences, University of Malta. She holds a PhD in cognitive psychology from the University of Birmingham and has carried out undergraduate and postgraduate teaching as well as supervision of numerous student dissertations at BA and MA level in the area of consumer behaviour. Dr. Brockdorff has over 25 years experience in directing, designing and conducting consumer behaviour and market research projects for leading international companies. She has published research in leading peer-reviewed academic journals including Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, and Memory & Cognition.


  • Caruana, A., Brockdorff, N., Chircop, S. & Camilleri, L. The role of perspective-taking in the understanding of cooperation and relationship marketing. Academy of Marketing Conference 2009, Leeds, UK, 2009.
  • Caruana, A., Chircop, S., & Brockdorff, N. Perspective-taking as a critical aspect of market orientation. European Marketing Academy Conference 2009, Nantes, France, 2009.
  • Heit, E., Brockdorff, N., & Lamberts, K. Categorization, recognition, and unsupervised learning. In Gluck, M., Anderson, J., & Kosslyn, S. (Eds.), Memory and Mind. Erlbaum, 2008.
  • Bott, L., Brock, J., Brockdorff, N., Boucher, J., & Lamberts, K.  Perceptual similarity in Autism. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 59(7),1237-1254, 2006.
  • Heit, E., Brockdorff, N., & Lamberts, K. Strategic processes in false recognition memory. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review. 11, 380-386, 2004.
  • Lamberts, K., Brockdorff, N., & Heit, E. Feature-sampling and random-walk models of individual stimulus recognition. Journal of Experimental Psychology : General.132, 351-378, 2003.



Aaron Ceross

Aaron Ceross

Aaron Ceross is Project Officer for various research projects coordinated by the Department of Information Governance and Policy, Faculty of Media and Knowledge Science, University of Malta. These include the SMART project and RESPECT. Aaron is also a Research Associate at Rijksuniversiteit Groningen in the Netherlands where his particular focus is on the CONSENT project. He completed his LLB in Law and International Relations at the University of Malta in 2007 and has worked previously as a Research Associate within the Centre for Law, Information & Converging Technologies at the University of Central Lancashire. in the United Kingdom. Aaron’s research interests include management and use of information, data protection and regulation of information systems.