Saturday 23 July 2011

Interoperability and standards in Digital Agenda for Europe

The introduction of the communication (in Swedish) was followed by overviews of the digital single market in the Digital Agenda for Europe and the planned Pillar I actions: Digital Single Market.


We move to a new action area in the communication:

A Digital Agenda for Europe; Brussels, 26.8.2010 COM(2010) 245 final/2 (41 pages)

According to the Commission, to reap the full benefits of ICT deployment interoperability between devices, applications, data repositories, services and networks must be further enhanced. Europe's standard-setting framework must catch up with fast-moving technology markets because standards are vital for interoperability.

Planned actions

The Digital Agenda portal lists a number of planned actions under Pillar II: Interoperability and Standards.

Action 21: Propose legislation on ICT interoperability
Action 22: Promote standard-setting rules
Action 23: Provide guidance on ICT standardisation and public procurement
Action 24: Adopt a European Interoperability Strategy and Framework
Action 25: Analyse the consequences of requesting significant market players to licence information
Action 26: Member States to implement European Interoperability Framework
Action 27: Member States to implement Malmö and Granada declarations

Standardisation review

You can read about the proposed actions in the communication, but we also see the cross-cutting nature of the Digital Agenda.

For an overview, our best course of action seems to be to stroll over to DG Enterprise and Industry:

June 2011 – More Standards for Europe and faster

Standardisation strategy

The communication on standardisation policy is available in 22 official EU languages; here in English:

A strategic vision for European standards: Moving forward to enhance and accelerate the sustainable growth of the European economy by 2020; Brussels, 1.6.2011 COM(2011) 311 final (20 pages)

Because of our interest in the Europe 2020 growth strategy, I quote the paragraph about the relationship between standards and various aspects of the EU2020 strategy (pages 3-4):

Standardisation will play an important part in supporting the Europe 2020 Strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, as set out in several flagship initiatives. Innovation Union underlines that a dynamic and responsive European standardisation system is needed to support innovation. The Industrial Policy flagship stresses the need for European standardisation to be highly responsive in a rapidly changing world, for it to support European competitiveness in the global market and for it to meet the needs of both industry and public authorities. The Digital Agenda for Europe highlights the importance of ICT standards in delivering interoperability between devices, applications, data repositories, services and networks. And the Flagship for a Resource Efficient Europe emphasizes the important role of standards in encouraging eco-innovation. Standardisation also play a role in policy measures such as the "Single Market Act", the Communication on Trade, Growth and World Affairs and the Disability Strategy 2010-2020. European standardisation also features in the review of the "Small Business Act" for Europe. The Communication on "a new response to a changing Neighbourhood" also refers to the need for partner countries to implement commitments on taking over EU standards in the framework of the negotiations with respect to Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements (DCFTA).
(The original document contains references to the relevant communications.)

Standardisation Regulation

As a legislative proposal, the communication on a Regulation for European standardisation is available in all 23 official EU languages (including Irish Gaelic); here in English:

Proposal for a REGULATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL on European Standardisation and amending Council Directives 89/686/EEC and 93/15/EEC and Directives 94/9/EC, 94/25/EC, 95/16/EC, 97/23/EC, 98/34/EC, 2004/22/EC, 2007/23/EC, 2009/105/EC and 2009/23/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council; Brussels, 1.6.2011 COM(2011) 315 final (51 pages)

You can follow the procedure on Oeil under number 2011/0150 (COD).

The proposal was accompanied by an impact assessment SEC(2011) 671 (English only) and its summary SEC(2011) 672 (in 22 languages).

Digital Agenda Assembly

The Digital Agenda Assembly 16 June 2011 dedicated a session to interoperability and standards.

Ralf Grahn

P.S. Just ahead of the Commission's Digital Agenda for Europe, the trade association for the European information technology, consumer electronics and telecommunications sectors, DigitalEurope, published its Vision 2020: A transformational agenda for the digital age. - The Vision 2020 White Paper is available in English, French and German.

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