As open as possible, as closed as necessary

EARE strongly supports the principle that data should be “as open as possible, as closed as necessary”, and is advocating for this principle to be at the heart of the European Commission’s new data strategy. EARE firmly believes that when it comes to data, more open data and data sharing can enable important societal and economic advancements.

Our current priorities

One of the key priorities of the new European Commission is to make the European Union a “leading role model for a society empowered by data to make better decisions – in business and the public sector” and to create a “single market for data”.

With the European Commission looking to develop data access and data sharing across the EU through common data spaces, the European Alliance for Research Excellence is advocating for an open approach to data in Europe, to ensure Europe’s competitiveness and future prosperity.

More specifically, we call on data to be “as open as possible, as closed as necessary” as we believe that what is most valuable are the insights that come out of data, rather than the data itself. In this regard, our key priorities are:

  1. Working with EU policy-makers to build the right economic and technical incentives for voluntary data sharing;
  2. Promoting a European and global IP framework that facilitates data sharing and minimizes unnecessary IP obstacles to data collaboration;
  3. Clarifying the interplay between privacy and data sharing–highlighting the fact that effective data collaboration involving personal data can co-exist with maintaining robust privacy protections;
  4. Encouraging the development and adoption of (cross-)sectoral codes of conduct on data sharing;
  5. Promoting the use of common (open) standards as part of the EU framework for data spaces, to ensure available data is open and usable.

Now is the time for European policy-makers to create the right framework and incentives to allow actors of the data economy to leverage the power of data and benefit society.

IP & Data

We strongly believe that mechanisms currently in place, (IP rights, contractual law, as data-sharing agreements), provide adequate protection for data. To that effect, we have been actively participating to WIPO’s Conversation on Intellectual Property and Artificial Intelligence.  

More specifically, creating additional rights in order to protect data beyond what is already available today is not necessary and could actually impede innovation by placing unnecessary barriers to the use of data for developing AI and related technologies, especially for researchers and Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs).