The EU's Open Data market is growing fast and is projected to reach a value of €265-286 billion by 2020, research by Capgemini Consulting shows. The sector that will benefit most from Open Data is public administration, which is estimated at a total market share of €83.5 billion by 2020. The consultancy also finds that direct and indirect effects of Open Data will create an additional 100,000 jobs in the coming five years.
Open Data refers to information that can be freely used, modified, and shared by anyone for any purpose. The information must have an open license and be provided in a convenient and modifiable form that is machine readable.
Open Data Directive
As part of the EU’s wider digitalisation and transparency legislation, the European Commission has set out to create a ‘data value chain friendly’ policy environment. The aim of the policy environment is to create the ‘systemic’ prerequisites for effective use and re-use of data through legal and soft law measures. To meet this aim, the EU adopted the Public Sector Information (PSI) Directive 2003/98/EC to govern and foster the re-use of Open Government Data in Member States; this legislation was subsequently amended in 2013 by Directive 2013/37/EU.III. The main objective of the policy is to enable better access to Open Data by:
In a recent report prepared by Capgemini Consulting, titled ‘Creating Value through Open Data Digital’, the consulting firm explores the economic and social side of the EU’s policy. The study collects, assesses and aggregates all economic evidence to forecast the benefits of the re-use of Open Data for all 28 European Member States and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries (Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland), further referred to as EU 28+, for the period 2016-2020.
As part of the research, the consultancy uses the Open Data Maturity (ODM) model to determine the Open Data maturity of the various countries within the EU and to project the continued development of that maturity over the coming years to 2020.
According to the analysis, many countries in the EU have been rapidly developing their Open Data capabilities in recent years. Whereas in 2005 60% of countries were considered ‘beginners’, this has since dropped to around 20%. The majority are now ‘followers’, whereby the basics are set, including a clear vision, and there are advanced features on the portal. ‘Trendsetters’, which have solid Open Data portals with elaborate functionalities and coordination mechanisms across domains, now make up around 30% of the total. By 2020 almost every EU country will be a trendsetter.
As the level of maturity develops, the economic effects of the data are expected to develop as well. The researchers consider the economic effects using two distinct metrics. The first are the direct benefits, which are monetised benefits that are realised in market transactions in the form of revenues and Gross Value Added (GVA), the number of jobs involved in producing a service or product, and cost savings. The second are the indirect economic benefits, i.e. new goods and services, time savings for users of applications using Open Data, knowledge economy growth, increased efficiency in public services and growth of related markets.
Direct benefits are projected to be worth around €51 billion for the EU 28+ in 2015, growing to €55.3 billion in 2016. By 2020, when most countries are trendsetters, the direct value is project to rise to €75.7 billion. Indirect benefits are also projected to increase significantly from between €138 and €154 billion in 2016 to around €189 and €210 billion by 2020. This translates to a total market value of around €286 billion by 2020, up from €209 in 2016.
In terms of Open Data generating economic value by sector, public administration by-and-far leads the pack by 2020 with €83.5 billion, followed by industry at $37.9 billion. Arts, entertainment and recreation, as well as agriculture, see the smallest gains at €31.4 billion each.
The researchers also considered the growth in direct jobs through to 2020 created from the Open Data policy. In 2016 the upper bound of such jobs stands at around 75,000 with the lower bound slightly about 65,000. By 2020 the lower bound comes in close to 90,000 while the upper bound stands at 100,000. This equals a growth of 32% over a 5-year period.