Past Event

Policies for digital innovation

We were pleased to welcome Paul Misener, Vice President of Global Public Policy at Amazon.com, to discuss innovation and regulation.

Date: July 11, 2016, 12:30 pm Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy

Summary

See below for video recording.

Innovations pose novel questions for policymakers. Some are uncomfortable with the pace of innovation. Others stuggle with the fact that new technologies and services often do not fit neatly into existing regulatory systems, while long-term benefits are hard to predict. A balance needs to be found between the application of the precautionary principle and the innovation principle. Could customer-focused innovation itself have novel characteristics that should be recognised and appreciated by policymakers acting in the public interest?

Amazon has a consumer-focused way of innovating. Despite cultural differences among consumers across the globe, they all value greater choice, convenience and lower prices. When it comes to innovation, Amazon behaves like a start-up and has investors that take a longer-term view. Amazon has had very successful and unsuccessful innovations, technical and non-technical innovation and innovations in areas where they already had expertise as well as in areas where they did not.

E-commerce in Europe is between 5 and 13 percent of total retail and 7.5% in the US. This is much lower than we would have thought two decades ago. There is still room to grow, as well as room for multiple players.

Another company that has significantly improved its position in the market, partly due to innovation, is Iberdrola. Iberdrola has an open innovation concept, where its works in a network, alongside universities, manufacturers and technical centres. However, as innovations in this sector require huge investments, it is vital to have a regulatory framework that is stable and innovation-friendly. An example of an area where innovation is needed is to reach the decarbonisation objectives, where cheaper alternatives need to be introduced, in order to get consumers to switch. Smart grids are an example where innovation has been hampered by regulation.

However, not only regulation has an effect on innovation and the extent to which it takes place. The speed of innovation also has implications for regulation. In EU regulation scale potential, harmonising systems and creating a level playing field are deemed important. However, different types of innovation may need different types of regulation. Regulating every specific innovation model is not likely to be a solution. We need to look at how to improve flexibility levels while preserving scale economies.

Regulating the outcome instead of the process, as was done with renewables, may come at the risk of excluding new and potentially better types of products and services that do not match the outcome exactly.

Finding the balance between the innovation principle and precautionary principle is difficult. We need regulators that focus on real-world innovation, an open regulatory process. Digital single market barriers still need to be removed.

Event summary by Nuria Boot, research assistant

VIDEO RECORDING

Innovations pose novel questions for policymakers, some of whom are uncomfortable with the pace of innovation or simply the fact that new technologies and services often don’t fit neatly into existing regulatory systems. Could customer-focused innovation itself have novel characteristics that could be recognised and appreciated by policymakers acting in the public interest?

We were pleased to welcome Paul Misener,  Vice President of Global Public Policy at Amazon.com to present on these issues, followed by comments from Eva ChamizoStephan Raes and other speakers.

Schedule

Jul 11, 2016

12:30-13:00

Check-in and lunch

13:00-13:30

Keynote speech

Chair: Reinhilde Veugelers, Senior Fellow

Paul Misener, Vice President for Global Public Policy, Amazon.com

13:30-14:30

Panel discussion and audience Q+A

Eva Chamizo, Director Brussels Office, Iberdrola

Stephan Raes, Head of Economic Department, Permanent Representation of the Netherlands to the EU

14:30

End

Speakers

Eva Chamizo

Director Brussels Office, Iberdrola

Paul Misener

Vice President for Global Public Policy, Amazon.com

Stephan Raes

Head of Economic Department, Permanent Representation of the Netherlands to the EU

Reinhilde Veugelers

Senior Fellow

Location & Contact

Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels

Matilda Sevon

[email protected]

Read about event More on this topic
 

Upcoming Event

Sep
2
14:30

Brave new digital industrial policy

Bruegel Annual Meetings, Day 2 - In this session our speakers will dicuss innovation and digitalisation.

Speakers: Francesca Bria, Kerstin Jorna, Marietje Schaake and Reinhilde Veugelers Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Palais des Académies, Rue Ducale 1, Brussels
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Investment firepower for the recovery: a conversation with Philippe Donnet, CEO of Assicurazioni Generali

At this event the CEO of Assicurazioni Generali, Philippe Donnet will be in conversation with Guntram Wolff, Director of Bruegel.

Speakers: Philippe Donnet and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: July 8, 2021
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Strengthening the weak links: future of supply chains

What new supply chains trends will we see in the post-pandemic era?

Speakers: Ebru Özdemir, André Sapir and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: July 7, 2021
Read about event
 

Past Event

Past Event

Ensuring competitiveness of low-carbon investments

At this event, speakers will introduce the core idea of commercialisation contracts, and then discuss key design elements. This includes whether contracts should be issued at the EU or national level, how competition for contracts should be organised, and which industries should be eligible for support.

Speakers: Natalia Fabra, Peter Handley, Ben McWilliams and Georg Zachmann Topic: Energy & Climate, European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: July 1, 2021
Read article More on this topic
 

Blog Post

Workers can unlock the artificial intelligence revolution

Employers and artificial intelligence developers should ensure new technologies work for workers by making them trustworthy, easy to use and valuable in day-to-day work.

By: Mia Hoffmann and Laura Nurski Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: June 30, 2021
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

EU debt vs national debts: friends or foes?

The EU will become into a major issuer of safe assets in the coming years. How will this interact with the debt issuance of European sovereign debts?

Speakers: Grégory Claeys, Yves Jacob, Gert-Jan Koopman, Pablo de Ramón-Laca and Imène Rahmouni-Rousseau Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: June 29, 2021
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

How to spend it? A closer look at the recovery plans

In this event, participants will take a closer look at the recovery plans submitted by EU countries.

Speakers: Zsolt Darvas, Alex Patelis and Maarten Verwey Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: June 23, 2021
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Conference on the Future of Europe: Vehicle for reform versus forum for reflection?

At this policy dialogue organised by the research project EU3D, panellists will discuss different options and what they may entail while revisiting the debates on the future of Europe at national and EU-level that have been conducted thus far and their patterns, including preliminary findings on national parliamentary debates.

Speakers: Sergio Fabbrini, John Erik Fossum, Magdalena Góra, Vivien Schmidt, Manfred Weber and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: June 16, 2021
Read article Download PDF More on this topic
 

Working Paper

Platform mergers and antitrust

This paper sets out a framework for addressing competition concerns arising from acquisitions in big platform ecosystems. This is a June 2021 update of the same paper published in January 2021.

By: Geoffrey Parker, Georgios Petropoulos and Marshall Van Alstyne Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: June 15, 2021
Read article More on this topic
 

Blog Post

The coming productivity boom

AI and other digital technologies have been surprisingly slow to improve economic growth. But that could be about to change.

By: Erik Brynjolfsson and Georgios Petropoulos Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: June 10, 2021
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

The Recovery and Resilience Fund: Accelerating the digitalisation of the EU?

How can new EU funds financed by EU borrowing supplement national digital and green funding and EU funds available from the standard seven-year EU budget to accelerate digitalisation?

Speakers: Sam Blackie, Zsolt Darvas, Maria Teresa Fabregas Fernandez, J. Scott Marcus and Ben Wreschner Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: June 8, 2021
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Women, Covid-19 & The EU Recovery Plan

How can we ensure that the recovery plan doesn’t leave women behind when 84% of working women in the EU aged 15-64 are employed by services that were predominantly impacted by Covid-19 restrictions?

Speakers: Mary Collins, Maria Demertzis, Alexandra Geese, Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, Dan Mobley, Naomi O'Leary and Emma Rainey Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: June 2, 2021
Load more posts