More than a hundred representatives of civil society organisations, EU and national public institutions, academics and industry joined the 6th Community of Practice for better self- and co-regulation (CoP) plenary meeting last Friday 22 January. Each of the speakers’ presentations gave rise to lively discussions throughout a day marked interaction and dynamism.

After a welcome address by Jean-Pierre Faure (EESC), the first session with Jean-Eric Paquet (EC, Secretariat-General) explored how the Better Regulation package is already delivering some improvements since its adoption in May 2015, through an enhanced cycle of impact assessment, implementation and monitoring. Patrick von Braunmühl (SRIW) then presented his proposal for a standard clause on how to introduce non-regulatory means in legal texts of the Digital Single Market. Positive comments were made, but also a number of reservations expressed such as the possible administrative burdens of the proposed approach, the need to involve a wide range of stakeholders or to ensure that the clause is flexible enough to match with current and successful self- and co-regulation (SRCR) initiatives. The discussion will be pursued on the platform for the next two weeks. Werner Stengg (EC, DG GROW), briefed the CoP on voluntary initiatives aimed at enhancing the quality and affordability of cross-border parcels deliveries and Joanna Wrona (EC, DG CONNECT), on her side, detailed the current study on the effectiveness of national SRCR schemes on advertising and protection of minors in the Audiovisual Media Services Directive.

The afternoon session first featured Anne Bergman-Tahon (FEP-FEE) who presented the Memorandum of Understanding on key principles of the digitisation and making available out of commerce works. Alain Galaski (AIM, the European Brands Association) then touched upon the roots of “nudging” in behavioural science, and the aim of the "Nudging for Good" toolkit, namely to see how a brand can make it easy and desirable for people to change behaviours and adopt healthier and/or more sustainable ones. Finally, with Hilary Sutcliffe (MATTER), participants looked at the Principles for Responsible Innovation, whereby new technologies achieve social or environmental benefit, the process by which they were developed and the challenges faced in terms of funding and stakeholder engagement.

The CoP Chair David Ringrose (EC, DG CONNECT) concluded the day’s discussions by emphasizing the importance of looking ahead and of bringing these practices into the mainstream, notably by exploiting the young structures now in place to follow-up on Better Regulation. The CoP members are now invited to pursue the conversation on the CoP platform notably on the standard clause and to submit proposals for agenda items for the next plenary meeting foreseen on 24th June 2016.