The 1996 Directive on the legal protection of databases (Database Directive) aims at supporting the development of the European database industry. It created a sui generis right protecting investments of database makers, regardless of the originality of databases, and harmonised copyright law applicable to the original databases. This study investigates whether the Database Directive fulfils its objectives, especially in the current context of the fast-growing data economy.
Relevant information was gathered from a wide range of stakeholders, including database users, makers and user-makers. Legal experts in the field of database protection additionally have been consulted through in-depth interviews to ensure that the evaluation is built on solid knowledge and experience. The results of a targeted online survey, a stakeholder workshop as well as the European Commission's public consultation, contributed to building up the evidence of the study. The consultation of the legal practitioners complements the legal analysis and desk research.