PrivTech for Data Risk & Value: It's Time to Cross the Valley of Death

10 Pages Posted: 13 Dec 2019 Last revised: 19 Dec 2019

Date Written: September 1, 2019


Despite clear advancement by the R&D community in attenuating the privacy-utility dichotomy, as well as a public and private market that is increasingly demanding both privacy protection and continual innovation, the transition and adoption of PrivTech capabilities to operational deployment is slow-going at best and moribund at worst. Why have repeated demonstrations that disprove the zero-sum conclusion of privacy vs. utility continued to fall on deaf ears, struggling to mature from proof-of-concept into pilot programs and onward toward general adoption?

This article offers a progressive but pragmatic way to think about PrivTech (privacy- preserving computation) against the sociopolitical backdrop of stated needs and capability gaps facing government and industry. Our intent is to help bridge this "Valley-of-Death" between government-funded PrivTech and the enormous demand for the sharing of sensitive data for legitimate purposes, by dispelling misperceptions and lack of awareness that impede the trust needed to propel PrivTech from the lab and into the business processes of government and industry.

Keywords: privacy technology, governance, data trust, privacy, security, technology transition

Suggested Citation

Kenneally, Erin E. and Archer, David, PrivTech for Data Risk & Value: It's Time to Cross the Valley of Death (September 1, 2019). Available at SSRN: or

Erin E. Kenneally (Contact Author)

Elchemy ( email )

Portland, OR 97238
United States


Guidewire-Cyence ( email )

San Mateo, CA
United States

David Archer

Galois ( email )

Portland, OR


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