In my last blog, I promised to give you a flavour of how the European Commission plans to move ahead with building a connected
This afternoon, I hosted the first high-level meeting between all the "DSM Commissioners" to kick off five years of teamwork. It was a very motivated atmosphere, with a great spirit of cooperation.
You can see us starting the meeting:
To be honest, I'm not a huge fan of 'procedure'. Content is what really matters. However, it was important straightaway to discuss how we will work together, the practicalities. But from now on, the focus is on making concrete progress.
We discussed and agreed on major priorities, work areas and a realistic timetable for moving forward over the next six months, as the way forward to creating an overall DSM strategy. This will be a very comprehensive exercise to be carried out over a very short time period.
We will focus first on the real problems and obstacles, and look at different policy options. Our work is divided into six themed areas, each involving the input and participation of several Commissioners. I'll detail a couple of these to give the general idea.
One area of work will be about building trust and confidence. Both of these are vital if a DSM is to exist in Europe and function properly. Everyone needs to be at ease about problem-free accessing of services across borders, and as much at ease about doing this online as they are offline. In policy terms, this means moving further on consumer rights, data protection and cyber-security: a very wide range of cross-cutting issues.
Another relates to removing restrictions (and preventing new ones) and particularly to stop blocking of online consumers based on their location or residence. This will be about reforming copyright rules and getting rid of unjustified curbs on transfer and access to digital assets. Is there anyone who would not want to get rid of geo-blocking, which goes against the core principles of Europe's single market?
Our other areas of work will aim to guarantee online access, connectivity and investment; build the digital economy; promote e-society; and stimulate digital innovation and research to make sure Europe remains a world ICT leader.
The idea is to come up with a fully developed DSM strategy by May 2015. We'll be listening carefully along the way, consulting all the time to make sure that we get it right.
More blogging next week.