The study presents the findings of the monitoring tool on data workers, the value of the data market, the number of data user enterprises, the number of data companies and their revenues, and the overall value of the impact of the data economy on EU GDP. The findings will feed into further developing the Digital Single Market in the EU as data is a catalyst for economic growth, innovation and digitisation across all economic sectors, particularly for SMEs and start-ups.

Infographic on measuring the size and trends of the EU data economy

Today the European Commission published the final results of the European Data Market study. The study presents the findings of the monitoring tool on data workers, companies, users and markets among others. The findings will feed into further developing the Digital Single Market in the EU as data is a catalyst for economic growth, innovation and digitisation across all economic sectors, particularly for SMEs and start-ups.

The Commission put in place a monitoring tool to measure the size and trends of the EU data economy as part of the European Data Market study, with the objective of measuring the socio-economic impact of data. The monitoring tool provides a first assessment of the emerging data market in Europe.

All indicators are presented for the years 2013-2016 as well as forecasts to 2020. The medium-term forecasts explore three alternative potential scenarios of evolution of the European data market and economy, based on alternative development paths driven by different macroeconomic and framework conditions: a baseline scenario (counting on the continuation of current growth trends and evolution of current framework conditions), a high growth scenario (where the data market enters a faster growth trajectory thanks to more favourable framework conditions), and a challenge scenario (where the data market grows more slowly than in the Baseline scenario, because of less favourable framework conditions and a less positive macroeconomic context).

The key areas covered by the indicators measured in this report are:

  • Data workers (workers who collect, store, manage and/or analyse, interpret and visualise data)and the balance between demand and supply of the skills people need to be able to work on data;
  • Data companies and their revenues;
  • Data user companies and their spending for data technologies;
  • The market of digital products and services (“data market”);
  • The data economy and its impacts on the European economy;
  • Medium-term forecast scenarios of all the indicators, based on alternative market trajectories.

 

The study has produced figures on the indicators for the EU as a whole, as well as on the individual Member States and both for the whole economy and also by economic sector. On top of that, figures were also made available on the key indicators for the US, Brazil and Japan.

 

The study has found that 6 million people in Europe worked in data-related jobs in 2015 and 6.16 million in 2016. As far as medium-term developments are concerned, it is estimated that under a high-growth scenario, the number of data workers in Europe will increase up to 10.43 million, with a compound average growth rate of 14.1% by 2020.

According to the monitoring tool, in 2016 there was a gap between total demand and supply of data workers of 420,000 unfilled data worker positions in the EU, corresponding to 6.2% of the total demand of the skilled data professionals. By 2020, the EU is forecasted to face a data skills gap corresponding to 769,000 unfilled positions in the baseline scenario and being concentrated in particular in the large Member States (especially Germany and France).

The data industry as a whole comprised approximately of 255,000 data companies in 2016 in the EU. According to the high growth scenario forecast, this figure will increase to 359,050 by 2020 with a compound annual growth rate of 8.9%.

The European market of digital products and services ("data market") in the EU was at EUR 54.4 billion in 2015 and at EUR 59.5 billion in 2016. This positive trend is expected to continue throughout the next four years, although at different paces according to the selected scenarios. According to the high growth scenario, the value of the EU data market will reach € 106.8 billion by 2020 with a compound annual growth rate of 15.7% since 2016.

The overall value of the data economy grew from the € 247 billion in 2013 to almost reaching € 300 billion in 2016. According to the estimates of the data market monitoring tool, the value of the data economy in 2016 was worth nearly 2% of the European GDP. By 2020, the EU data economy is expected to increase to € 739 billion with an overall impact of 4% on the EU DGP under a High Growth Scenario characterised by a stronger driving role of digital innovation and with higher overall ICT investments.

The European data market monitoring is used to assess the progress of on key data-related policies currently undertaken by the European Commission, for example the recent initiative on "Building a European data economy".

 

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