Governing Smart Platforms: Policy Directions in the Collaborative Economy

SmartSocietySocialCharterforSmartPlatforms-final9.30 – 16.00, December 5th, Scotland House, Rond-Point Schuman 6, Brussels.

Location: Scotland House 

We held a successful event with over 80 people registered and more than 40 attendees. The event stimulated wide ranging discussion around the Sharing Economy, taking in its impacts and trajectories and considering the sorts of tools, frameworks and policies that can preserve its energy whilst ensuring socially beneficial outcomes. We heard  key perspectives from the EU Commission, the Smart Society project, UNI Europa, the UK Digital Catapult and Nesta. Resources from the event are now available for download below.


Event background

Our institutions are undergoing fundamental change driven by the emergence of platform technologies.  These technologies lever mass participation in interlocking institutions to co-produce complex constellations of value.  Many of the effects of platform technologies are seen as being positive.  Uber is effective in many locations. Airbnb offers unprecedented variety of accommodation around the world.  But there are issues: Platforms offer new forms of flexible employment, but does this lead to much more precarious forms of work? Platforms mobilise material resources, but do they distribute the benefits fairly? Platforms become enmeshed deep inside everyday practice, but do platforms exploit the knowledge gained from that to our disadvantage?

This one-day workshop will begin by exploring these issues, then will consider the range of responses to platforms by different stakeholders and finally will consider how this range of responses might articulate to form a coherent riposte to the issues embodied in the rise of the platform society.


‘The landscape of the Collaborative Economy’ – Helen Goulden
Helen is an Executive Director at Nesta and leader of its Innovation Lab.

‘Digital Footprint Project – Crowd work in Europe’ – Aileen Körfer 
Aileen is a Policy Officer at UNI Europa responsible for digitalisation, the single market and economic governance.

Regulating Platforms in the EU’ – Prabhat Agarwal
Prabhat leads the work on Platform Regulation at DG Connect.

‘A compass for smart platform initiatives’ Paul Timmers
Paul is Director, Digital Society, Trust & Security Directorat-General CONNECT

‘Personal data platforms and lightweight trust-building solutions’ – Lucie Burgess
Lucie is Head of Personal Data and Trust at the UK Digital Catapult

‘A Social Charter for Smart Platforms’ – Mark Hartswood
Mark is researching Responsible Research and Innovation for platforms at Oxford University.

Mayo Fuster Morell will be taking part in the panel session. She has many roles, including being the Dimmons director of research on collaborative economy at the Internet Interdisciplinary Institute of the Open University of Catalonia.


9.30 Registration
10.00   Welcome, Stuart Anderson

Morning session – ‘Issues’: Chaired by Michael Rovatsos
10.15   Helen Goulden, Nesta       
10:35   Aileen Körfer, UNI Global Union
10:55   Prabhat Agarwal, EU Commission
11.15 Coffee Break
11:45   Panel session, Chair Michael Rovatsos

12:30   Lunch

Afternoon session – ‘Initiatives’: Chaired by Simone Fischer-Hübner
13:30   Lucie Burgess, UK Digital Catapult  
13:50   Paul Timmers, EU Commission   
14:10   Mark Hartswood, Smart Society    
14:30   Coffee break
15:00   Panel session, Chair  Simone Fischer-Hübner    

15:45   Wrap up and Smart Society Platform, Daniele Miorandi

16:00   Close


This event is being organised by the Smart Society Project

SmartSociety is funded by EU FP7-FET Future Emerging Technologies n.600854