Open movement is key to innovation, growth and jobs, says EC Vice President Neelie Kroes

July 17, 2014

Press Release, 17th July 2014, For Immediate Release

Open movement is key to innovation, growth and jobs, says EC Vice President Neelie Kroes

Speaking at the Open Knowledge Festival 2014 in Berlin, European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes this morning called on the open movement to put the pressure on national governments to open up data in order to help create jobs and growth.

On the same day as the European Commission released new guidelines to Member States to accelerate the open data agenda, the Commissioner emphasised the role of the open movement represented at the Festival in making the right to reuse public information a reality across the European Union.

Against this backdrop Commissioner Kroes said she felt inspired by the open movement and had learnt a lot from open data campaigners and practitioners during her time in office. She said that being open means better decisions and better governance, and that increased sharing and collaboration will drive innovation. In Kroes’ view this means Open offers unique opportunities to solve issues like youth unemployment, and to boost economies across the EU.

To achieve this aim, Neelie Kroes said we need more than a Digital Agenda at EU level: she said we need a change in mindset from every public administration, which the Open Knowledge community can bring about through action.

Commissioner Kroes was speaking at the Open Knowledge Festival 2014 in Berlin, the world’s biggest gathering of those engaged in openness, from government representatives to civil society activists, developers to journalists.

Over the past three days, well over 1000 participants from over 50 countries around the world have taken part in workshops, talks and activities covering hot topics such as personal data and privacy, government transparency and openness, and the contribution of the data revolution to journalism and to social change activities.

ENDS

For more information or to arrange interviews with people from the Open Knowledge team, please contact press@okfestival.org

Notes to the Editor:

· The Open Knowledge Festival has taken place from the 15th - 17th July 2014, at Kulturbrauerei in Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin. It is the second Open Knowledge Festival, after a 2012 event in Helsinki, and the eighth annual event of Open Knowledge. http://2014.okfestival.org/

· The Open Knowledge Festival is organised by Open Knowledge, a worldwide non-profit network of people passionate about openness. Open Knowledge uses advocacy, technology and training to unlock information and enable people to work with it to create and share knowledge.https://okfn.org/

· Today’s EC release: “Guidelines on recommended standard licences, datasets and charging for the re-use of documents”, published 17th July 2014, is available at https://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/news/commission-notice-guidelines-recommended-standard-licences-datasets-and-charging-re-us

· Images from the event are available at https://www.flickr.com/groups/okfestival2014/

· A live stream of the keynote from Commission Kroes is available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UNRZEsLxKc&t=29m27s

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