Published 10 February 2012
Updated 18 June 2015

 --- Posted by Sacha Wunsch-Vincent, World Intellectual Property Organization, Senior Economist (in personal capacity)

In the current environment, the search for new sprouts of growth preoccupies many of us. With the focus on austerity measures, the Euro and capital shortages, we have our heads in the macro-economy cloud; with some danger of getting lost in it…

At this juncture it is critical to remember what the important sources of growth really are. I mean innovation and entrepreneurship of course, in particular as they relate to new technologies and new jobs. I mean business and policy practices which avert the real risks to innovation-based growth in Europe. They matter. Let’s not treat them as residuals to (surely equally important and connected) macro-economy matters.

With this in mind, I am thrilled to see that the Danish EU Presidency and the European Commission have decided that “Future growth is digital” and that something needs to be done about creating a Digital Single Market [Have you ever tried to shop online across borders in Europe? Worse, sell products or services online…? Not something for the mild-hearted]. In fact, a whole High Level Conference on 27-28 February 2012 will be devoted to this topic and I have gladly accepted to chair a session on Promoting e-business innovation: New business models in a knowledge-based economy.

 With a few excellent panelists: Eric Hazan (McKinsey), Alain Heureux (IAB Europe),

Erika Mann (Facebook), Graham Vickery (Independent Consultant) and Rolf Nordqvist (Bisnode AB), we will look at many issues which occupied me my previous function at OECD: the growth of digital content products and services, the rise of social networks, new business models related to big/open data,….All this with two questions on our mind:

1 -     Can Europe live up in the area of digital innovation and produce “global players on this front? [Think online search, online video, social networks and the like]

2 -    How can a common digital European market help?

Keep posted as I announce some of the details of the session.

And if you are an avid Internet innovator: Let me know the 2-3 most important roadblocks you see for e-business innovation in Europe!

You can either comment under this blog post or  follow the discussions on twitter at #dsm12.