SOMA supports the Workshop: Removing Barriers to Digital Platform Transparency across Europe

The European Advisory Group of Social Science One is organizing the one-day workshop Removing Barriers to Digital Platform Transparency across Europe’, with the support of the European Commission, DG Connect and SOMA, on 18 October 2019 in Brussels, to discuss the need for, barriers to, and potential solutions for achieving greater platform transparency.

Nowadays, digital platforms are having profound impacts on European societies. However, it has never been more difficult to research, identify, and understand these impacts. These platforms are restricting access to data available via their application programming interfaces.

Furthermore, digital ad archives developed in response to the Code of Practice on Disinformation have significant limitations. The Social Science One initiative which aims to implement “a new type of partnership between academic researchers and private industry”, in order to both help understand and solve “society’s greatest challenges,” is in serious jeopardy. Without greater data access and transparency, researchers, policymakers, and the public will be left in the dark regarding the effects of digital platforms on democratic societies.

This workshop will bring together a variety of policymakers, researchers, and platform representatives from across Europe to concretely identify and address:

  • pressing questions related to digital platforms’ functioning in democratic societies
  • the types of data needed to answer these questions
  • the ethical, commercial, legal, and policy implications of securing such data access.

SOMA’s Project Coordinator Nikos Sarris and Andrea Nikolai of the project’s partner T6 Ecosystems will attend this significant effort, supporting the need for platform transparency across Europe.

The workshop will take place on 18 October 2018, 08:30-17:00, in Centre Albert Borschette (CCAB)