If done right, the European Commission’s initial proposal on the Data Governance Act (DGA) has the potential to be an important step towards a European data economy. While previous discussions about the use of data have focused primarily on the important topic of data protection, there is an increasing awareness for the innovative potential of data, which is why we welcome that the DGA addresses all types of data (personal, non-personal, government sector and specific data sets). In order to accelerate the digital transformation of European economies, the data economy has to be enabled with a clear and harmonized framework. For that, existing regulations - sector specific and others - need to be carefully assessed to determine which rules are fit for purpose, which need amending and which should be developed into a broader rulebook for the EU’s data economy. It should also be highlighted that the aim is not to have a single integrated data space but to connect various initiatives for data sharing – also across different domains – on a technical level to ensure their interoperability.
While the DGA can only be a step in this direction, we welcome the initiative and aim to comment based on 12 principles and the detailed comments in our Position Paper which can be downloaded below.