European Commission reveals outcome of public consultation on big data


The European Commission urges governments to embrace the potential of big data in a press release on 2 July 2014. Prior to the press release, the European Commission had issued a public consultation.

The main problems identified in this consultation were:

  • Lack of cross-border coordination
  • Insufficient infrastructure and funding opportunities
  • A shortage of data experts and related skills
  • Fragmented and overly complex legal environment

Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the European Commission stated: “It’s about time that we focus on the positive aspects of big data. Big data sounds negative and scary, and for the most part it isn’t. Leaders need to embrace big data.”

Big data has been a hot topic in the last years, but here are some astonishing facts about the actual size and potential impact. According to the Commission: “Every single minute, the world generates 1.7 million billion bites of data, equal to 360.000 DVDs: over 6 megabites of data for each person every day.

As a result, the data sector is growing by 40% per year, 7 times quicker than the overall information and communications market, and big data is already helping us speed up diagnosis of brain injuries, find the perfect spot for wind farms, avoid traffic congestion, or forecast crop yields in developing countries. Global big data technology and services will grow to USD 16.9 billion in 2014 and data will create hundreds of thousands of new jobs in Europe. Businesses that build their decision-making processes on the knowledge generated from data see a 5-6% increase of productivity.”

Ecommerce Europe welcomes the positive attitude of the European Commission towards the potential positive effect of big data. Big data is important for webshops to develop their marketing strategies and can be beneficial to the consumers. Ecommerce Europe is more than happy to share its insights on big data and its applications for the growth of the e-commerce industry, fuelling the European economy and contribute to job creation.