What role the public and private sectors must play to grow the European digital eco-system, including non-EU firms.
What legislative and political tools the EU and its member countries have or might need to ensure less dependency on non-European digital service providers and greater competition on the market.
Examples of initiatives by European firms to build and provide viable alternative products and services for European citizens and businesses.
How, if Europe gets this right, its push for digital sovereignty could further encourage and cement a values-based approach to global digital cooperation.
BelgianID & itsme
This conference will take place from 14:30 – 18:00 CEST on 29 September 2020. The agenda will be updated shortly.
The push for greater digital autonomy in Europe is arguably as much a political project as it is a technical and commercial one. This session will look at how European policymakers should approach digital sovereignty from legislative, diplomatic and political perspectives. It will look at how global cooperation around internet services and governance might develop over time and how Europe should be preparing itself for the future.
It is well documented that while Europe has leading players in the global digital eco-system, it is still far behind countries such as the U.S. and China. This session will look at the risks and benefits of European attempts to further develop its own systems and platforms, from operating systems to cloud infrastructures. Would increased possibilities on the market, regardless of origin, be enough to drive more competition? And what role should current non-European businesses play in building up the European eco-system? This session will look at what policymakers need to do to support European businesses to gain a better foothold, both in Europe and globally, and analyse the merits of a European-first approach.
Europe’s burgeoning drive for greater digital sovereignty is ambitious and likely to be complex. Increased autonomy from the technology providers that have become ubiquitous and central to EU citizens’ lives, not only poses practical and technical questions, but also raises many political and diplomatic ones.
The delivery of a more independent European digital infrastructure, principally driven by Europe’s legitimate privacy and security priorities, but also linked to questions around competition and dependency, will not only demand large investments from governments in complicated projects – an entrepreneurial approach towards the development of digital technologies that delivers competitive, and crucially European-developed, digital products and services is also essential.
It would, however, be too simplistic and economically damaging to prematurely cut the digital umbilical cords of which society has come to depend. Europeans rely on a data and digital eco-system that, while largely non-European, has made a significant contribution to productivity in the EU. It is also clear that any Balkanisation of the internet would not be in the EU’s interests and that working towards mutual trust and the development of global norms that reinforce shared values is critical.
The principal choices available to the EU are, broadly, to prioritise privacy-focussed, secure technologies and services, using additional regulation and competition enforcement if required, regardless of where the services may be based or headquartered; or to work towards a true digital sovereignty through the development of services and infrastructures that are, to all intents and purposes, European built and delivered.
Registration for this event is complimentary for all participants.
Due to social distancing rules and limited capacity in the European Parliament, this event is subject to an application registration process. If you are interested in submitting your application to attend, please click on the registration button below.
We will inform you if we have been able to allocate you a place no later than Friday 14th August.
This conference will take place in the European Parliament in Brussels.
For more information on any aspect of this event, please contact Geraldine Evans using any of the details below.
Tel: +44 (0) 2920 783 070