miércoles, 26 de junio de 2019

Finishing the building of the European Data Space

Data is recognized as a critical resource for the development and grow of the economy in the forthcoming years. On one hand, there will be an infinite number of data sources, which grow is driving by the dissemination of the IoT. According to IDC, 41.6 billion IoT devices will generate 79.4 zettabytes of data in 2025. On the other hand, there will be a growing demand for data from AI applications across all the economic sectors. Only the market of AI in IoT Devices will reach $9.5B in North America by 2024 with 28.% CAGR. Therefore, we are getting closer to a perfect storm with a perfect match between supply and demand.

Europe has been building a shared data space for years based on legal certainty. Firstly, with the personal data and privacy framework which is now in its second generation with the GDPR.  Now, the free flow of non personal data regulation establishes a new legal innovation without possible comparison in other geographical areas. These two elements set up the the base for trust that allows to say that the free movement of data may be called already the fifth freedom of the European Union and underpins Europe position as worthy partner in the digital economy.

However, an unlimited space for the free movement of data has no sense without unleashing the sharing of data among private and public actors.  Regarding the public sector,  with the continuous exploration of new frontiers for the re-use of public sector data that has achieved a new milestone with the third version of the PSI Directive, it may be said that there is an unrestricted access to public data. By the contrary, B2B or B2G sharing of data its yet in its infancy. 

Regarding B2G sharing of data, there's a strong case for forcing the access from governments to certain data. Data held by companies can be very relevant to guide policy decisions or improve public services. The more the data the better the planning of public services based on evidence. Starting with the data generated by utility companies and ending with data from online platforms for mobility or housing services, the definition of an harmonized European legal framework for B2G sharing of data will unleash without doubt a new wave of sustainable growth in Europe and helps to achieve the SDGs.

More complex in the issue of B2B data sharing. On one hand, any hard or soft regulation measure should be based on voluntary schemes and linked with the different business model for sharing (such as monetisation/selling data, marketplaces/exchanging data, industrial platforms/joint ventures or opendata). On the other hand, as part of this data may be personal data any sharing of it should be based on consent from the sources. The respect for business models and the user privacy rights should be also combine with awareness-raising campaigns among companies on the benefIts of sharing data.

No Single Market would be possible without a Digital dimension and non Digital Single Market would be possible without a European Data Space. Therefore, the survival of Europe as a commercial power depends of deepening and strenghtening the efforts on data regulations beyond ensuring the flow of data  it´s needed promote flooding the channels of exchange with the data itself

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