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Julius Fenn


Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
Institut für Psychologie
Engelbergerstraße 41
D-79085 Freiburg
Abteilung: Allgemeine Psychologie

Raum 3023
Tel. 0761 203 9153


Research Interests

I am developing tools to assess the acceptance and possible ethical issues of emerging technologies. Emerging technologies are at a research and development stage and not yet integrated in existing normative frameworks for decision-making. Depending on the technological maturity innovative methods to assess these technologies are necessary - therefore I am developing within my PhD two central tools:

(1) We have developed tools to collect and analyze data of  Cognitive-Affective Maps (CAMs). Using CAMs it is possible to identify, visually represent and analyze existing belief structures or any kind of semantic knowledge. CAM incorporates so-called affective valances by representing whether a person associates positive, negative, neutral or ambivalent emotions with a concept. Furthermore, it is possible to specify the connections in different strengths and dashed lines stand for inhibitory connections and solid lines stand for strengthening connections. CAMs additionally contain directional arrows, which represent a directional effect. Thus, CAMs represent a weighted directional network with a simple graph structure and can be analyzed and summarized by means of network analysis. Two tools have been developed and are currently being revised:

If you are interested in setting up a CAM study, please contact me!


(2) We have developed the “Ethics Scale of Technology Assessment” consisting of 51 items belonging to six moral theories. This scale allow a highly economic assessment of possible ethical concerns regarding emerging technologies of different stakeholders. By including different ethical theories, it is now possible to evaluate empirically if certain emerging technologies differ in their line of ethical argumentation (like “iPhone vs. nuclear power plant”). The ethic scale is conceptualized as the degree respondents believe a technology is morally acceptable regarding multiple ethical theories and servers as a “broad early warning system”.



Education / Jobs


Jan 2020 - Sep 2020                     Coach für Datenanalyse (Betreuung von Bachelor-, Master- und Doktorarbeiten), sowie Statistiknachhilfe

März 2019 – Dez 2019                 Promotionsvorhaben in der Empirischen Bildungsforschung -        Internationales Bildungsmonitoring und Bildungsberichterstattung an der Universität Hamburg

Sep 2015 – Nov 2018                    Angewandte Statistik (M.Sc.),

 Universität Göttingen

Sep 2012 – Juli 2015                     Psychologie (B.Sc.),

 Université de Fribourg (CH)


Publications under review / in progress

Fenn, J., Gorki, M., Höfele, P., Estadieu, L., Becht, C., Kulbe, L., de Wall, M., Gekeler, J., & Kiesel, A. (2023). A Data-driven Multi-Method-Approach for Identifying Ethical Concerns of Emerging Technologies.
Fenn, J., Gouret, F., Gorki, M., Reuter, L., Gros, W., Hüttner, P., & Kiesel, A. (2023). Cognitive Affective Maps Tools: Proposing Multiple Software Solutions to Collect and Analyze Belief Systems.
Fenn, J., Höfele, P., Sölder, P., Reuter, L., & Kiesel, A. (2023). Development and Validation of an Empirical Ethics Scale for Technology Assessment—Challenges and Perspectives for a Real Time Ethics for Emerging Technologies.


Peer-Reviewed Publications

Fenn, J., Helm, J. F., Höfele, P., Kulbe, L., Ernst, A., & Kiesel, A. (2023). Identifying key-psychological factors influencing the acceptance of yet emerging technologies–A multi-method-approach to inform climate policy. PLOS Climate, 2(6), 1–25.

Livanec, S., Stumpf, M., Reuter, L., Fenn, J. & Kiesel, A. (2022). Who’s gonna use this? Psychological acceptance prediction of emerging technologies and transdisciplinary considerations in the Anthropocene. The Anthropocene Review.

Reuter, L., Fenn, J., Bilo, T. A., Schulz, M., Weyland, A. L., Kiesel, A., & Thomaschke, R. (2021). Leisure walks modulate the cognitive and affective representation of the corona pandemic: Employing Cognitive‐Affective Maps within a randomized experimental design. Applied Psychology: Health and Well‐Being.


Teaching, Workshops

 Wintersemester 2023/24            Wissenschaftliche Konzepte & Methoden

Wintersemester 2020/21            Wissenschaftliche Konzepte & Methoden

Wintersemester 2020/21            Fundamentals of Questionnaire Design and Analysis using lab.js and R

Wintersemester 2019                   Quantitative Forschungsmethoden

August 2019                                   Tagesworkshop in „Einführung in Mehrebenenmodelle in R“ innerhalb der FDZ Herbstakademie in Berlin

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