New study highlights economic and geopolitical challenges in EU Data Strategy

New study highlights economic and geopolitical gaps in the EU data strategy. It is found that Europe lags behind the US and faces challenges from China in the data economy. Key challenges include data access for SMEs and a shortage of skilled professionals.

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A new study on the EU data strategy reveals economic and geopolitical gaps that need to be addressed. The study, conducted by the Institute for Competitiveness in partnership with other Southern European think tanks, highlights how Europe is lagging behind the US and facing increasing challenges from China in terms of the GDP impact of the data economy.

The study examines the economic preparedness of European countries, comparing their performance in terms of GDP impact, occupation, and skills in the data economy. It introduces a data economy index comprising six indicators, including the use of cloud services, Big Data analytics, the share of data professionals, and the value of the data market. The economic index shows that Nordic countries lead in economic preparedness. In contrast, Central-Eastern European countries are lagging behind, and Southern European countries are in between and are seen to face challenges in data access for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), digital skills, and data infrastructure.

Additionally, it is suggested that the EU should develop data diplomacy to establish regulatory agreements with like-minded countries and safeguard against the potential misuse of data regulations by third-country companies, which could use the regulation to access Intellectual Property and obtain data from sensitive sectors like defense. The study also emphasizes the importance of defining incentives for data sharing among companies and addresses the complexity of the regulatory landscape, particularly in sectors like healthcare.