The EU’s Plan to Unlock Industrial Data Needs a Rethink

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Publication Date July 2022
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The EU has already passed sensible regulations to help unlock commerce in industrial data – so that data can be obtained by firms best placed to exploit it. For example, the EU requires public authorities to open up their datasets; it removed barriers to non-personal data transfers within the EU; and lawmakers recently agreed the Data Governance Act (DGA) to encourage voluntary data-sharing in the private sector. The Czech presidency of the EU is now prioritising the Data Act, a ground-breaking proposal by the European Commission. The proposal represents a radical departure from the EU’s (sensible) 2020 data strategy. The Data Act instead applies concepts from the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)  – which protects personal data – to industrial data. That is a bad idea, given growing evidence that the GDPR has reduced innovation by small firms.

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European Commission: COM (2022) 38: Proposal for a Regulation on harmonised rules on fair access to and use of data (Data Act)

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