Euroconsumers International Forum
Bridging the Gap between Consumers and Businesses in the digital age
BRUSSELS - 12 nov 2019
About this forum
The cumulative knowledge on Big Data and Artificial Intelligence from the last two internal editions of the Euroconsumers Seminar demonstrates that more and more consumers are expressing their rights on digital platforms. On the other hand, it also shows that the digital ecosystem is clearly unbalanced since consumers do not obtain a fair share for their data without which no single product or service can be developed and/or marketed. The spread of predictive algorithms and machine learning also represent a huge opportunity for consumers and consumers organizations but still pose new risks and threats. Data became an essential asset for the growth of the global economy and its monetization should always be considered legitimate provided that consumers are allowed to give their informed, voluntary and deliberate consent and that they are given a fair share of the value created.
As modern and pragmatic Consumers Organizations we always look beyond the protection of the status quo for our members and consumers in general, interpreting our mission in an forward-looking and dynamic perspective The real challenge we face, if we really want to improve the present, is, therefore, firstly to imagine the future and then, in order to make it truly attainable, to find the courage to overcome the often sterile and fruitless opposition between the fundamental rights of citizens and consumers and entrepreneurial freedom. Only through contamination and collaboration with the main forward-looking market players will we be able to transform our strength into a positive “enzyme” in the new data economy and to promote a more balanced digital ecosystem. It is precisely with this firm intent and determination that we have decided to dedicate the first Euroconsumers International Forum open to the public to Bridging the Gap between Consumers and Businesses: Additionally, these analyses, we are proposing a multistakeholder and highly qualified discussion, involving European regulators, leading market players, thinkers of the digital world and top consumerists in order to address some of the most pressing issues concerning the development of a more sustainable digital value chain.
Four main trends are shaping the future of consumers in the digital era: the bias of the digital ecosystem towards major Internet players; the expression of fundamental rights on digital platforms; the ‘humanization’ of Artificial Intelligence; and the monetization of the value created through data processing to the benefit of consumers.
Euroconsumers aims to bridge the gap between the new digital consumer and the leading Internet market players by teaming up with those enlightened, future-oriented companies who believe in a more sustainable and responsible digital value chain which is based on a fairer sharing of economic benefits among all stakeholders, from businesses to consumers
SMART TRANSPORTAchieving a smart mobility system which is green, safe and seamless for the benefit of all consumers will be high in the next EU Commission’s agenda. Private smart mobility solutions – from car-sharing and ride service hailing systems to e-assist bikes and electric scooter rentals – provide consumers with many benefits, such as the possibility to move through the city cheaply, quickly and sustainably. When fully integrated with public transport systems, they can also greatly benefit local governments. But they also pose several risks, from the compliance of their terms and conditions with EU consumer law to safety concerns and data privacy issues.
In a disruptive format, able to set the mood for an out-of-the-box reflection, we will welcome an audience of 150 people, including high executives of the Euroconsumers ecosystem plus a wide range of high-level EU decision makers, members of the European Parliament, industry, entrepreneurs, researchers and key representatives of the consumerist world and academia from all over Europe.
The Euroconsumers International Forum will be held in The Claridge (Chausée de Louvain 24, Brussels). See the Forum Agenda.
We invite you to read the white paper CONSUMER POWER written by Marco Pierani (Euroconsumers Director of Public Affairs and Media Relations).
WHY WORK WITH
The digital economy is more and more based on consumers assets, being their localization, tastes, preferences, behaviors, social ties, desires and even aversions and dislikes, all of which are of priceless value for all industries and sectors. The monetization of consumers’ data is increasingly responsible for profits and growth of companies around the world and there is no doubt that this digital ecosystem is unbalanced in terms of benefits sharing.
We believe that the public enforcement of regulation, restricting companies’ access to data or imposing fines, is not enough since if data is the currency of the new economy trust among actors must be its warranty. Without it we take the risk of breaking the whole system.
Euroconsumers represents a strong group of organizations and can be a reliable partner of responsible companies, helping them not only to guarantee consumers fair position in the market but also maximize the benefits of the technological evolution for all the actors. In order to do that, there is a lot of new knowledge to be shared as well as improvements in the development of products, services and business models.
We are prepared to work with all companies interested in understanding better consumers’ minds, rights and innovation potential. For us, UX is more than a fashion, it is a core value.
With a long and broad experience in testing products and services from all industries and sectors, giving precise recommendations to consumers in terms of safety, quality, performance and functionalities, Euroconsumers will award – for the very first time – an annual prize for the most consumer-friendly brands among leading manufacturers of household appliances and electronic devices. The prize will be awarded every year to the brands that show outstanding performances based on the results of the quality comparative tests and surveys which Euroconsumers carries out on a rolling basis on a variety of products.
It’s much beyond the usual sectorial self endorsement.
It’s consumers voices recognizing the best available in different categories. And the winner is…
OUR PAST EVENTS
Every year executives from all Euroconsumers organizations plus other consumers entities, high officials from the European Commission, besides leading companies representatives and great thinkers of the consumption relations, used to gather in Brussels for a full day of talks, debates and workshops on frontier issues related to consumption in its many facets. Initially intended to be an event restricted to the Euroconsumers executives, it has become gradually open to guests and observers due to its public utility.
Take a look at our last editions:
BIG DATA ARE THE FUTURE
As an emerging meta technology, Big Data and its appliances to the consumption relations is a big business and consumers must be able to share in the added value. Along with business leaders and high-level authorities including the Belgian Minister for Telecommunications and the Digital Economy we have looked at the many implications of Big Data appliance and the benefits it could (and should) bring to consumers. This was an opportunity for consumer organizations to better understand this hyper-connected world where data is the new currency of the modern digital economy. In a public session open to the international press the manifesto MY DATA IS MINE was launched, being our positioning statement landmark since then.
Our 2018 edition of the Euroconsumers Seminar took place on June 22, 2018, on Claridge Events, Brussels, discussing the positive and negative impacts of Artificial Intelligence with special focus on Machine Learning. In a whole day of talks, debates and communications it was possible to map upcoming risks and opportunities for consumers on the top of the new technological developments of companies, new regulations from governments and new strategies form other civil society organizations. Social, economic, regulatory and behavioral aspects were taken into account. Participants included the United States Trade Commissioner, Rohit Chopra, European Union high officers and top executives of leading companies such as Google, Amazon. Microsoft and Vodafone. Its innovative format was also very welcome creating an inviting atmosphere for both speakers and audience.