“Our economies and societies are going digital. Future prosperity will depend largely on how well we master this transition. Europe has strengths to build on, but also homework to do, in particular to make sure its industries adapt, and its citizens make full use of the potential of new digital service and goods. We have to prepare for a modern society and will table proposals balancing the interest of consumers and industry”, these are the words of Günther H. Oettinger, European Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, when last Wednesday (6th of May) he presented the Digital Single Market strategic plan together with Vice-president Andrus Ansip, aiming to mark a milestone in the development of e-commerce and a unique and single market fostering creation of digital services.
The FIWARE community feels excited about this plan and the opportunities it could bring for FIWARE to play a role.
According to The Guardian, this is a way for European shoppers and firms not to be left behind, as not a single market leader among internet providers is European. “the aim of the digital single market”, explains the Commission, “is to tear down regulatory walls and finally move from 28 national markets to a single one.” And this would not only bring benefits for consumers, but it would also contribute to the European economy 415 billion euros and about 3.8 million jobs.
The Digital Single Market strategic plan aims at providing better access for consumers and businesses to online goods and services across Europe, creating the right conditions for digital networks and services to flourish and maximizing the growth potential of our European Digital Economy. The vision on topics like online platforms, the trust and security in digital services and in the handling of personal data, the intent to lay the foundation for a economy of data or the need to boost competitiveness through interoperability and standardization looks very promising since clearly they are areas where FIWARE can help to meet the goals.
As Mr. Oettinger explained during his speech in Net Futures 2015 (read full speech here), “FIWARE is a European innovation, an open, multi-vendor alternative to existing proprietary Internet platforms. It is an innovative technology, with a broad library of generic components allowing easy connections to the Internet of Things, performing Big Data analysis, hosting services in the Cloud and some dozens of components more […] It responds to customer demand for open platforms, which connect seamlessly and flexibly into existing environments and most importantly allow service and application innovation on top of them”. We actually believe that an open source platform like FIWARE can contribute to build standard digital infrastructures providing standard APIs for the access and exchange of data, enabling new innovative digital services developed by entrepreneurs to emerge, meeting the necessary security and privacy requirements. Ultimately, helping to create the technology foundation for an economy of data. This is the reason why we feel excited about the launch of the Digital Single Market strategic plan and the kind of opportunities that it my bring to our community. Let’s wait to see what there is to come!