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What is the role of cloud computing in the building of the new European data economy? Read the last report of the European Commission

On 10th January 2017 the European Commission released the document Staff Working Document on the free flow of data and emerging issues of the European data economy, which accompanies the Communication Building a European Data Economy. The Staff Working Document provides a detailed description of the emerging issues relevant to the EU economy, in particular on the free flow of data issues, and highlights how a thriving data-driven economy can be reached through investments in ICT infrastructures and technologies such as Cloud computing. In particular, the document underlines that the availability of good quality, reliable and interoperable datasets is fundamental for a data-driven economy which can stimulate research and innovation and foster the growth of big, medium and small businesses.

In order to foster a data economy, the European Commission’s Digital Single Market strategy (to which HNSciCloud contributes to) outlined a set of concrete actions to remove the existing barriers to the free flow of data across communities and sectors, for which a fundamental step is to improve the uptake of cloud-based IT services.

Besides the description of the current blockages to the free movement of data (such as data localization restrictions, access to and transfer of non-personal machine generated data, data liability, portability of non personal data, ecc.), the Staff Working Document provides information on the existing solutions to address the data issues. One example is the COPERNICUS programme for the data re-use: COPERNICUS collects earth observation data that the EU makes available to public bodies, researchers, business and citizens through a free and open data policy, with several benefits for all these contexts (for examples, the development of adequate policies and services in public sector, the deployment of data to develop products in the commercial contexts, ecc.).  

The document also highlights the ongoing international debate on the free flow of data in order to encourage the dialogue with stakeholders and identify the most effective ways to facilitate the access and the sharing of machine-generated data, such as a guidance on incentivizing business to share data and a set of default contractual rules for data licenses.

 The Communication “Building a European Data Economy” is part of a strategic initiative on the data value chain, which focuses on nurturing a coherent European data ecosystem that will stimulate research and innovation around data and the uptake of data services and tools.

To read the entire Staff Working Document, click here