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IGF 2019 – Day 1 – Raum I – WS #184 Crossborder data: connecting SMEs in the global supply chain

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Fourteenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Berlin, Germany, from 25 to 29 November 2019. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 

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>> Are you able to hear us?

>> Yeah, Christina.  I can.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Hello, everybody.  My name is Thomas Grob.  I am the moderator for this session.  I work for Deutsche Telekom.  We wanted to make this a fish bowl, but, of course, as you can see, it's a little bit difficult to set up the fish bowl here.  But we do have a lot of front seats in the front row.  Whenever you feel like doing an intervention, I kindly invite you to take a seat, grab a microphone and it indicates you want to intervene at any time.

We also are live on a platform called Beekast Up.  You can go there through the app.  Beekast.live.  I think the QR code you see there, it will work, but getting that code into your phone might not be the easiest thing to do right now.  Okay.

So we wanted to know to get a first impression of who do we have in the room.  We put up a question of what stakeholder group you belong to.  I suggest while we go to the first speaker for part 1, you make this information public through Beekast.

We have three parts today.  Part 1 is all about data enabled digital transformation for small, medium enterprises.  Part 2 will focus on the data flows in the SMEs global supply chains and part 3 will dive into questions of privacy and data protection.  So regulation basically.

For part 1, I would like to kick this off as an intervention from (?) who is the founder and CEO of GoCoop.  Siva was not aim to join us here, but we have him online.  Siva, the floor is yours.

>> SIVA DEVIREDDY:  Thank you.  Thank you, Thomas.  Good afternoon to all of you and greetings from India.  I'm Siva cofounder of GoCoop.  It is an online market base platform from India.  We make these beautiful products for the design and traditions not only in India, but globally.  India has roughly 9 million official numbers and unofficially, there is ‑‑ unfortunately is because of the ‑‑ a lot of people practice in India as a full‑time profession but as a pass time as part of the way of life in India.  I'm not sure the number can be as high as 22 or 25 million in India.

I think most of you are familiar.  I did my schooling in the U.S. and then I actually started my career in the Bay Area in San Francisco.  And I think most of you are familiar that there is a huge market for cross products not only in the U.S., but in most of the development countries around the world and any developing economies across the world.  Market size product is estimated to be over 300 billion.  And this is growing actually.  The reason why there is a good growth in the craft market according to us is two things.  One is there is what you tell us and I thinks (?)  People are really concerned and they really care.  Consumers are getting concerned and are quite thoughtful about the products they're buying, what is the impact of a particular product making the life and who is making these product.  There are consumers developing handmade textiles and product as part of their lifestyle and part of their daily living.  At the same time, you are seeing a lot of growth and travel and tourism across the world.  Travel and tourism for most (?) of local handicraft and (?) base products.  I thinks global demand is growing and that was the idea of GoCoop.  How can we Connect these rural artisans based in India potentially with the buyer s and con supers across the world through an online market base platform.  That is GoCoop.com.

Essentially, there are two things smaller group of artisans.  It is an online operator bringing together small marginalized communities and bringing them together because sometimes they're so small and the capacity is so limited that it is not economical to Connect them with market.  But when they're able to aggregate these Groups and make them into a larger group, it becomes much more easier to Connect them with the market.  So we doing two things.  One is aggregating them and second we're Connecting them with markets in India and as well as outside of India.

I think the important thing is cross bottom create and how are we Connecting SMEs in a global market as part of this session.  But just imagine a scenario where more than 50% of artisans are living in India.  And you have removed part of stake result which is fairly out of the last part of the state is fairly unconnected.  So in a remote part, you have a group of artisans making these beautiful handmade textiles.  We have a customer in San Francisco who is buying these products from this local group of artisans.  Making that happen, Connecting the buyer, Connecting this local group and makings transaction happen to an Ron line platform is what we are talking about and being able to do this very well with many customers, many buyers from over 12 countries globally.  And it's not easy.  I think this has been quite challenging at many levels.  You can imagine right from getting a group online, making them understand what de commerce is and how that can benefit them and getting products ready for commerce in terms of quality, in terms of certain standards, Connecting them with (?) the buyers and finding these products and discovering these products and understanding the products.  And also looking at specifications of what they wanted and finally placing models.  It's a very complex process, but I think we have been able to do that very successfully across the last five years and through the platform.  And I think this is the power of technology and this is what I feel is a very good example of what we can do to really enable and sustainable development by connecting these small producers not only to markets in local countries, but in market outside their geographies.  So this is an example of GoCoop and I'm very happy to have this opportunity to discuss GoCoop with all of you today.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Before I go to our second speaker, I would like to have our first results.  We have an impression of the distribution of stakeholder Groups participating in this session.  So we can see here in the blue bar is Civil Society currently at 17%, government at 25, Private Sector at 42, academia 8 and Technical Community also 8.  We didn't ask that online who in here is actually representing a small or medium enterprise.  Please raise your hand.  So they're all online if they're there.  There is one.  Okay.

[Laughter]

Excellent.  Also speaking in part 1 is Cornelia Kutterer.

>> CORNELIA KUTTERER:  Thank you very having me.  It's interesting you were asking this question.  I really like to be following previous speaker because the ability of what he explains is possible with technology.  It's precisely where at the digital transformation from small, medium size enterprises is such a benefit.  And one of the big changes has been with the digital transformation in particular with Cloud where the efficiencies are high.  So I wanted to start with a couple off notes on research that we conducted in different regions.  And then talk a little bit quickly about some of the policies that matter in particular to enable small, medium size enterprises.  I start with the European study that we have conducted in 2017 and for you're, it is accounted as around 99% of Europeans means business.  It is more small, medium enterprises.  So they are a huge economic pillar of Europe's economy.  In 2017, we conducted a study with international business school called in good company study into SMEs across Europe.  And we surveys around 13,000 small, medium size enterprises below 250 employees.  In approximately 20 European markets.  So the ‑‑ the key figures here is that 40% think about digital transformation, the success for SMEs particularly in finding more customers or direct contact with customers and I think that was something at which came through in previous example.  Only making more money, earning more money.  31% or grading new products and services.  25%.  With 24%, they explain how employees grow and develop is one of the key factors that makes them look into ‑‑ into digital transformation.  We conducted a similar study in October 2018 in Singapore which was called small‑medium size enterprises, digital transportation.  We also looked into the obstacles potentially for small and medium sized enterprises in the digital transformation journey.  Interestingly around half of them, 57% said in the poll they have not heard about the term ‑‑ that they had heard about the term digital transformation.  And then they're also ‑‑ and this is almost similar to the study done in Europe the previous year.  The motivations are fairly similar.  So an average of 26% thinks about revenue gains and importantly 22% seek to achieve cost savings.  Again, also in Singapore, small‑medium size interfaces make up 99% of all enterprises.  I think this is really good to discuss a little bit the issues they are having.

In particular, look at efficiencies and attracting new customers, increase work force efficiencies and cost savings.  So the motivations are fairly similar.  There is a perceived concern around ‑‑ around digital transformation which is around ‑‑ which is about ‑‑ sorry.  The perceived high costs in the digital transformation difficulties to integrate.  Some still believe there is no urgency and often the lack of digital skilled work force is also mentioned.  Think in particular when we think about ask digital transformation becomes a question about being able to complete in the narcotic.  The lack of digital skilled work force becomes an important area to think about in terms of policy.  There is new studies of force recently published around the big issues around AI in 2020 and they ‑‑ one of the risks is there mights be a new digital divide.  Those that will have the AI tools and those that won't.  In combination with the risk of lack of digital skilled (?), I think there is a certain in particular risk of for small, medium size enterprises.  So with all of that said, I'd like to just talk about a couple of policies that will be important in this context.  First of all, we talk about data privacy and data protection.  But access to data, the ability to share data and open data is, I think, equally important to consider and enable companies to have the possibility to create these data sets necessary to be ‑‑ to be aimed to use and benefit from democratized AI tools to enable them to compete in this new world.  With that, I'll hand over to the moderator.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Excellent.  Thank you very much, Cornelia.  I would like to introduced rest of our panel today.  On my right‑hand side, we have Malgorzata Ignatowicks.  We also have James Howe here.  He's a Senior Advisor at International Trade Center.  To my right is Sheetal Kumar.  And we also have policy for web services for central (?) and European region.

So, um, if anybody has a question or an intervention to what has just been said by Siva or by Cornelia, grab the microphone and go ahead.  That doesn't seem the case.  So I will first start asking the question.

What obstacles do we see that in particular SMEs are facing when it comes to digital transformation?  Please?  Could you please state your name and where you're from.

>> My name is (?)  I'm the President of Africa (?)  Yes.  I'm going to talk about in context of Africa.  I think looking at the topic, collecting SME in the global supply chain, how Africa has these issues with data.  Yes.  For Africa to be able to fit in this contest, the first thing we need to do is look at our issues and try to address them.  That way even with the government, if you take an example of the ministry, you have a lot of data.  There is data sitting there.  Nobody (?)  Nobody issues in the data even if you talk about (?) market data.  For example, we reach the SMEs and rely to do whatever business they want to do online.  So the first thing is look at data issues very well within Africa and then try to address data gap and we also have to encourage the use of data in Africa.  And then lastly, we need to see how to strengthen the data we did in Africa.  That is the only way I think some of these can have meaning in Africa.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thank you very much for that statement.  Does anybody react directly?  That doesn't seem to be the case.  So I quickly point to the Beekast.  We are starting to discuss in you're opinion, what is the greatest challenge SMEs face to date in their digital transformation?  You have four options to answer on the Beekast.  We will go back to that after we have concluded discussion on part 1.  Are there any more questions toes panelists or interventions from the floor?  The access code is, um, it's a queue letter.  Do we have a digital number code?

>> So just to get everybody logged in, here we have the QR code.  If you go to the website, Beekast.live.  The session code is ICC BASIS workshop.  And that should get you logged in.  So you can access this platform on your computer or on your mobile device and then you're able to submit questions or comments for our speakers and also participate in these Q&As.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Okay.  We seem to have people that want to interact on the app now.  And any questions from the floor?  Or statements?  Sure.

>> Again.  My name is Weslo.  I want to access ICC business.  What are they doing in respect to Africa?

>> THOMAS GROB:  That is actually a bit difficult since we don't have goodbye there ICC BASIS to spinning to that right now.  I'm sure they'll be glad to take your question online.  We will get the answer offline, if that's okay for you.  Cornelia?

>> CORNELIA KUTTERER:  A couple of thoughts.  I am much more focused on Europe.  So forget my knowledge, but the specifics are not the same.  What we see when it comes to Data Governance is a very complex set of frameworks that play together in the place and I think ‑‑ so it's not only data protection, privacy or competition law, there is public sector informational regulation where public sector is obliged to open up data.  Sometimes also research that is funded by public sources and there's increasingly efforts to incentivize data, sharing.  So the different mechanisms they all play into each other and only when you analyze them.  This will enable a discussion on how to serve them in particular, small, medium size enterprises.  There is data available between small, medium size enterprise start ups, NYOs or bigger companies to benefit from that four new products or social or important aspects of live such as sustainability or (?), et cetera.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thanks, Cornelia.  Any other reactions from the panel on that topic?  Doesn't seem to be the case.

>> Thomas, if I can add a point?

>> THOMAS GROB:  Let's look quickly at what our online questionnaire says.  We currently have 8 response responding.  The lack of digital tools, it goes to the shortage of capable talent.  Other one threats of cyber attacks and seven of importance of digital transformation.

So if there are no other questions or interventions, I would like to move to part 2 of this session where we discuss about the data flows Connecting the SMEs in the global supply chains and the first panelist that has an official statement on this.

>> CARSTEN KESTERMANN:  Thanks, Thomas.  Yeah.  My name is Carsten Kestermann.  I work for web services here in Berlin basically responsible for central Europe.  AWS is engaging in this field of cross data flow since it's beginning because, of course, the cross data flow is very important topic for our customers.  And this is especially the case when it comes to small, medium size businesses who want to work abroad or work let's say on wider sphere within Europe even in the world.  And what we see very often is that at the moment, we still look the possibility of ‑‑ especially a small, medium size customers, select the possibility to really unless the potential of pre‑cross data flow due to the fact that a lot of the regulation or policies that apply national and make its very hard for them to apply to those to the variety of national laws.  And this ‑‑ when you think for example about IoT, which is a growing aspect especially for small, medium size companies in the industry and being part of a global supply chain, and you think about across poly data flow and then you think about a very metric oriented value chain.  So for example, let's say the infrastructure that your (?) data is based in country X.  The software that you maybe as a small medium size company are developing.  Your ‑‑ and your customers in country C may be the customer of the customers in country D.  And non‑analog, but in a digital world that all happens at once within a second, within a mini‑second.  And for the SMEs, this faces a lot of challenges because there's a lot of uncertainty out there of what regulation applies at what time and in what circumstances.  And so that is true for data privacy.  But there's also true in even more true for data security.  And for sort of data ownership topics and this ‑‑ this set up makes it very complex for small, medium size businesses to really (?) her to unleash the potential of the data driven economy and now we're only talking about Europe/the (?)  So you will see that the set up we faced today really is not ‑‑ it's not a cross data flow and makes it very hard for small, medium size companies to unleash the potential of data usage or data of digitalization and really add value to that value chain.  And this is something that we think would be the biggest effect, positive effect if we can create the governance framework that allows cross data flow in a very seemless way especially for start up on small, medium size companies that you raise uncertainty of what applies at what time.  But really gives very clear guidance on what type of regulation and what type of policy applies in which sequence of the value chain and, um, this is something that we think we all need to work together on it on a global scale, on a European scale to really help especially small, medium size companies, to unleash the potential of the digital era and to unleash the potential of the Cloud, but also IoT and industry.  Whatever you can think of, um, of value chain is because only if you make it as easy as a one‑stop shop, one click type of thing.  We will help small, medium size companies to really concentrate on their part of the vail chain instead of I'm stepping back and not unleash the full potential of their business.  Thank you.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thank you, Carsten.  I would like to pass it over to James who also prepared for this part of the session.

>> JAMES HOWE:  I would like to talk about e‑Commerce.  It's not the same thing as data, but it become very dependent on data.  E‑Commerce is become very rapidly the new normal in trait.  I work for an organization called the International Trade Center and our job is to encourage developers for use of trade to put this in place.  And I have a team that's active in developing countries to educate about especially and help small groups overcome barriers.  So this as we said is a new form.  Many shops online in 2017.  But it's a growing population and finding what they need online.  The community we're talking about here is small businesses.  We already heard and we already from GoCoop.  What a power of the opportunity this can be.  We see that small businesses are making use of it and 22% affirm what we have done exclusively and trade firms and we changed a couple of years ago.  There are a thousand SMEs.  They said this.  65% of SMEs who are not doing cross border trade or e‑manage wanted to do so.  I have facts pointing in the same direction.  This is big.  This is becoming the new normal, but yet a lot of small businesses are held back from doing this.  It would know a different conversation for another day.  Let me tap back to data.  It's the important of data and not the other way around.  So data is, of course, its own story.  I make reference to a paper buy and McKinney says in the previous 10 years the data growth has been something like 45 times and they did an estimate that the world's GDP was 10% higher because of that.  Position is saying this is normal what is going on here.

Now interesting last week I had the good fortune to attend an organization.  A survey published by the British federation small businesses which looked in depth at this data.  How important is the data and how much firms are being held backed by data issues.  Remembering this is a relatively sophisticated market.  The majority of GoCoops, but 25% of those engined in the business across border noted their task of is significant issues.

So there was even in a market as well informed as the UK, there was a lot of ignorance about data protection and a small inventory.  So let me switch to Africa which is I want you to look at this question.  I conducted three companies.  I come here and interview them and be very brief.  Even here, there are issues in terms that we recognize.  So my area, I spoke to a gentleman who was running a cycle who he's not typical across of small entrepreneurial activities, but sells through Facebook.  It is someone in coaching.  And there is a question.  What is being and well ‑‑ another perhaps more sophisticated requirements is a company called Buy Sell Them.  It is a brand to new beginning, but also covering Latin countries.  Spain and several other countries.  But right from the beginning is counting issues.  We talked about this global issue.  And I'm nearly at my end here.  And we have even more sophisticated firms which are called e‑Commerce and system hosting and managing cross‑border activities on the part of international class.  There's a wide variety of capabilities and exposures of data.  There are new data protection laws which are coming into force in November.  Only a couple of weeks ago which company is opposing what is going to change.  What the laws are that government and there's a large ‑‑ I will stop there because that's my five minutes.  I can come back.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Excellent.  Thank you very much for those insights.  Before I open up the floor for a discussion, I would like to point your attention again to the Beekast interstate form.  You have entered all other.  So in your opinion, what is the greatest trade barrier for SME stuff is the question we are asking through ‑‑ there are different regulations in other countries, custom regulation, language and/or cultural gap, Internet connectivity issues or finding business partners abroad.  These questions have actually been asked before.  So we kind of reelevate what this other survey has produced among the audience here.  This is just to give you something to think about when we discuss data flows.  Anybody feel like posing a question or making another statement on this topic, please go ahead.

>> Hi, everyone.  I'm Lawrence Kay from the Open Data Institute in London.  I just wanted to point out about the nature of data in the international trade.  So basically if you're an SME or a regulator in the room, we think that you face questions about three boundaries.  So the boundaries between closed and shared data and between shared and open data and then you're sort of international data boundary and your international data boundary.  A lot of questions that we're talking about are in the shared space to space which is essentially what are the mutual rules, regulations between one jurisdiction and another.  And a lot of discussion and these are should the UN do something?  But they're also lots of emerging policy solutions that can really ‑‑ that could really help SMEs around the world.  There are things like ‑‑ things tech bridges and helps SMEs to lower the transaction cost of market and these type of solutions can be spread to other sort of data connection arrangements.  There are also things like data trusts or sandboxes or whatever where we can really help SMEs from around the world to deal with data issues and share data spaces.  And I think some of the discussion could really get on to developing countries and how we apply those and perhaps some new trade agreements or signal them.  And then use international corporation.  That's really helped developing countries enter an international data exchange because I will finish here.  If you focus the question what's on the screen on data, the biggest barrier to data flows in tried.  Can be one that isn't here yet.  That's is if some countries commit to high data standards domestically, but they're unable to call as time goes by and develop a reputation for not being able to implement the standards they have submitted to.  That I really, really fear is alluding problems that will keep some countries out of international data flows for many years to come and make their connections with consumers in rich countries that need to be able to trust order countries in order to be able to share sensitivity or whatever that person's data.  That is the sort of question.  Just to give you my opinion, but I hope that's helpful.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Of course.  Do we have any more opinions or questions?

>> I am a law professor from Morse University of Technology.  I have a question to Carsten.  You mentioned that we really need a governance framework that allows cross‑border data flow.  How likely do you think that's going to happen given that all the regulator was getting more and more complicated and more diverse fight as more and more countries introduce data protection laws.  Some of them introduce data localization requirements and this kind of obstacles.  So that's the first question and the second question is in your line of business, given any of the SMEs really strick with issues and they do.  What is the predominant approach?  Do they find a solution and hope for the best?

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thanks for the question and the remark.  Maybe to start with is ‑‑ I didn't say it was not allowed to share data cross‑border.  Of course it is and under certain circumstances.  But let's say the barrier is not as low as we always said we would be.  It is people and that it is not as seemless as it should be.

Reading your question, unfortunately my glass bowl is a little bit foggy.  So it is really hard to estimate the way forward.  From a European union perspective, district attorney with a tree flow of data directive.  And as far as ‑‑ I lessen to the Europe committee.  They do see the importance of the free flow of data as something ‑‑ as something as a prerequisite to fulfill the digital single market.  And I also hear from a lot of international governments Germany, France, also Poland that the digital market is something they want to achieve and so from a headline base or to say I think at least the European governments are aligned on the goal.  The question is:  So what?  And the question really then is okay.  A lot of them pursue them.  So the question really there is:  Why?  And what are the next steps to overcome that situation?  And frankly, I don't know.  I don't know what's happening.

On the last point of what a small, medium size businesses do at the moment?  As I said, it is possible especially within the European union, of course you can stall data abroad.  You can share data between Poland and Germany and Denmark and whatever.  It is just more complicated.  Yeah?  And I think we see that example which is a very interesting one.  Yes.  You can share data abroad, but to reference.  Even if you are sharing data, you need to apply to different mechanisms and measurements wherever you want to use the data.  And that slows you down in scaling your business, of course.  Yes.  Sorry for not having a more clearer answer on that one, but I think last point and that's a very private observation.  And I think the, um, the importance to find a solution are the importance of really making the digital market in Europe happy I think was more so prominent and never so powerful than now.  I think before we had a lot of discussions about the importance of the digital thing in market and now really governments feel the importance of making that happen.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thank you, Carsen.  Before we go into the space of privacy and data protection considerations, let's have a quick look at our survey and interestingly finding business partners have brought this and it doesn't seem to be a problem anymore.  It seemed like the most professor request.  As a network operator, I am also happy to see we only have one responder saying Connectity issues are a huge number.  Completely fine.  The pavement solutions and customs regulations.  However, we do see they're the main source of obstacles.

Okay.  So let's keep the time table.  One more intervention and part 2.  Okay.

>> Hi.  I had a small question to Carsten.  I've ‑‑ it is cool.  Young enterprise and my question is that how do you attest the owners of SMEs about the digital disruption that the Cloud technologies can do?  Is there any ‑‑ they're trying to communicate to the SME owners because coming from India, I work with the farmers and they don't have other technical know how about proud technology can be.  So is it that some dumps already started ‑‑ there is technology or about that and is it Amazon is working in that space with independent owners and about what technology is about and how they can use it to their advantage.  That's my question.  Thank you.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thanks for the question.  That's a really good question.  And with AWS, we ‑‑ we are totally customer obsessed, of course.  So we always try to help our customers to make the most ‑‑ most usage of the Cloud.  There are two parts of it.  One needs to separate it a little bit.  One is the technology part how to really use the Cloud the most secure and best way.  We make a lot of ‑‑ we made a lot of workshops and engagements with our customers to really help them to understand and how to increase the potential of Cloud infrastructure or platform as a service.  For example, architectured workshops.  That is our ‑‑ this really is our focus because that is also one of the biggest ‑‑ the biggest ‑‑ yeah.  Say items or biggest challenges especially small, medium size company base when using the Cloud, how to design their architecture.  Right?  It is secure.  It is agile and it is on our infrastructure.  We focus very much on that one.

On the business model side, we have a lot of partners who work with customers who really help them to transport the business model.  AWS is a Cloud provider.  I'm not sure we would be the best consultant to explain the new business model for digital farming.  For example, Fin Tech or whatever because that isn't the remedy and in the core, the core expertise of the customer.  We do not, of course, I won't say reluctant, but I would say we focus very much on the technical part of unleashing Cloud's potential instead of the business partner because it is a decision that should be made and has to be made by each individual company and customer.  But, of course, what we do is show the potential of what they can do.  Like okay.  What really is possible when scaling the Cloud is customer help and cases.  So we have ‑‑ we have a huge variety of customer cases especially for small, medium size companies who helped them to understand what are the most important parts to leverage the potential of the Cloud.  Hopefully that answers your question.

>> Thank you.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Excellent.  So before we kick off part 3, I would again like to point you to the Beekast app.  But you have possibility to do ‑‑ we talk about privacy and data considerations.  Please share your feelings.  I am really curious what is going to be the picture after the next 15 minutes.  With that, I pass the floor to Malgorzata.

>> MALGORZATA IGNATOWICZ:  Thank you for this introduction and for taking place on this panel.  It is for me as a person, we have a background in supporting companies especially in doing business and so on.

So just to start with from my point of view, SMEs and entrepreneurship in general are essential drivers of economic and social well being.  They are instrumental to insure our economies as well stand to major transformations such as digitalization, globalization; however, what is worth to mention I think and I found SMEs and entrepreneurship are on the high policy, especially in Poland.  The lock of common sense or applied robust and comparable ‑‑ I found digital technologies are opening up new opportunities for young companies, for start ups and SMEs to innovate and to Cloud in digital business platforms.  Big data and fine then.  But SMEs, in my opinion, much more dependent on the business size the system and policy environment, but large companies it's clear.  Many SMEs continue to face barriers in strategy resources and knowledge, the right stuff, finance and skills, digital skills as well.  With that clear benefits for SMEs in protecting data and mitigating sign are security.  SMEs are typically less engaged in internationalization going global just to compare with the big players, the big ones.  This channel for product productivity.  Notably in the context of free sense attentions, I think what it all leads at the scale of the challenges I mentioned, lists a code for innovative and multi‑level policies solutions.  In a few words, I would like to share with you some faults and even second thoughts of how we try to make it clear and make it vary as the office.  We try to stay very proactive to level the playing field for SMEs and start ups.  We try to also capitalize on this emerging students making them a major target of public policy and attention and haven't as well.  We try to facilitate and build a dialogue and partnerships between all the stakeholders.  It is better addressing everyone.  We take some steps in the initial to strengthen the business haven't system in Poland.  That's the obvious way we launch the kind of protects, with it's aim to have ‑‑ I mean in doing business with international bodies just like different agencies.  We share some information how to do it.  We also provide information on markets, on the standards, advise on strategies if necessary.  It let's to get the knowledge about access to technology to innovation and it's frequency covered with approach financing packages.  We also as the office tried to promote the international level and finally in the (?) on multi‑stakeholder approach other it's guiding.  Our experts soon tribute, they are working in the ‑‑ they take part in many conferences and so on and so far.  And we as the obvious contribute as well, we host a lot of as the Poland, we host a lot of events to support the important subjects.  Also from the SMEs perspective.

Just to sum up in my opinion and (?) the potential SMEs and entrepreneurials, on the other hand, it is very important to work closely international.  I think each country has to find its own way to strengthen (?) the positive and institution of markets to see what.

>> SHEETAL KUMAR:  Thank you for having me at this discussion.  I've been taking notes and hopefully I can respond to some points that have been made through this intervention.

For those of you that don't know much about global partners, the human rights organization, we work globally to promote digital environment and democratic values.  We work with them to the end.  Civil Society, governments and the private sector and within the private sector, we work with bigger global companies, but also what we term tech SMEs in particular because you pointed out already, SMEs occupy really important role in the economy and society.  I understand apparently SMEs account for 90% of businesses in the word.  So we understand the importance.  As a human rights organization, we believe that having respect for human rights in particular privacy and freedom of expression, an SME policy is a really important, but also from a commercial point of view, useful thing to do.  So start ups, for example, that deliver services like ‑‑ match making services or whatever it might be.  But any SMEs in the digital space, they impact human rights.  What we found in the delivery of workshops that we have done is that it can be quite a challenge.  You're starting ‑‑ you're trying to attract investment and maybe human rights and privacy is probably not the right thing on your agenda.  I wanted to pick up on something which I heard a lot about.  The need to protect the free flow of information as a central to grow.  One thing that's true of data protection frameworks and I will not give you the history, but there's a shot of win in the ride here that we'll be able to pick up on the understand.  The very heart and motivation of developing frameworks in the first place in the 1970s and Europe, was to insure the free flow of information is protected and you think that's essential.  They also implicate personal data, which is not the same of all data.  I think that the another thing we need to keep in mind and, of course now, there is so much personal data and there is only going to be more flowing across borders with the coming of 5G networks.  There is going to be a lot more personality data that needs to be protected.  Why from a ‑‑ in place it's important.  One thing is obviously trust.  The second is attacking more opportunities for investment and growth.  So on trust, one of the most important things for our SMEs particularly the one we work is tech SMEs.  We have seen an increase of cyber attacking with security measures has led to embarrassing accidents exposing large amounts of data.  It's not good for remediation, and there is someone compliance.  Different countries can be and it is really important, of course, that SMEs do consider what their obviously obligations are.  They will probably exist at the national level or pretty ‑‑ there is global train and speak more and more.

On that point, I think what is really essential is that data privacy is considered and as a right considered in the beginning of servicing and the platforms or whatever might be the focus of the SME if you deal with the questions are out but that helps further down the line to make sure you don't come across ‑‑ for example, data security breaches or even lining up in code facing resources trying to fight back.  I think that's really key.  Data privacy by design, that's essential.

At the national level, there are frameworks.  Three main frame works which are important to mention.  It is 55 signatories including non‑European countries.  And then there's ‑‑ not all obligations there apply to SMEs because some of them don't apply to organizations or companies with less than 250 employees.  But the EU has provided a lot of guidance in this respect.  That's another very important piece of regulation to consider.  And then the UN guiding principles.  The core responsibility to protect human rights and access to remedy for victims of data.  That provides an international number in work for you to identify what the obligation are.  I know we don't have much time and hopefully I can respond to questions.  I think it is important to see the regulations and requirement.  What we just heard is how important it is to have Harmonization of frameworks.  What the GDPR has done and the convention when they're consensualized.  So SMEs and other companies require clarity in this space.  So insuring that the ‑‑ that the regulatory frameworks are harmonized and more countries adopt data protection frameworks that apply with the GDPR, it will help with compliance and remove that need to try and comply with lots of different frameworks.  The more Harmonization, the better.  I think those are providing a lot of opportunity for that.  So yes.  To conclude, I think it is important to see data protection and privacy as an opportunity.  Opportunity to build trust and a strong reputation.  And having those discussions within SMEs at the beginning and insuring there is process for streamlining all of the data protection and privacy consideration throughout the process really helps in the long‑term.  What we have done a ‑‑ it explains what freedom of expression and privacy means in legal terms in each of those countries.  Practical ways that SMEs can start respecting them and what you can do in specific scenarios.  If a government asks for a certain data, I would be happy with these.  But hopefully that has given me some good for thought.  Thank you.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thank you, Sheetal.  How do you feel?  Do you feel protected or over burdened by privacy and data protection regulation.  The floor is open.  Too many regulations.

>> We detailed first and second degree.  We're talking about data security and privacy issues.  I think there's emerging thing of the value of the dates in itself.  What does that mean?  That was an interesting debate.  I recommend getting a hold of the summary of it.  Competition.  On particular, it is about whether the value was recognized at the origin.  So there's questions about fans?  Bali was captured in one place of the activities of the data belonging to an origin or generated.  That's above and beyond the issues.  It is certainly emerging the competition sphere.  The me is having to address.  How did they make money out of data and small companies are very often depend on this is about cross border data and the value being moved as well as the data.

>> THOMAS GROB:  All right.  More questions?  More statements?  This is your opportunity to ask excellent panelists.  Doesn't seem to be the case.  Do we want to have a look at our work Cloud?  Okay.  GDPR stands out.  Complex and difficult to understand.  Fragmented government approaches.  So I'm sorry.  You seem to have hit it on the head.  The word college is a diverse one.  I think we are far from like solutions here.  There's a lot of harmonize to policy development.  Statements?  Questions?  If not, I would like to use the Beekast app to get support for the summary of the sessions that we do.  I hope that we're ready to throw them up there.  Okay.  We need another five minutes.  So, um ‑‑ if the audience doesn't have any questions, I will see if I can come up ‑‑ okay.

>> I have one comment I would like to share with you; however, it concerns the previous part of the discussion.  I had in one of your comments that SMEs don't consider digital single market as a harmonized market.  I totally agree; however, I work for the office of electronic communications.  And last year we conducted a study to investigate barriers in the international pretense of our SME.  We see ‑‑ we are responsible for telecommunication market.  But we consider the market as a part of global ICTs ecosystem.  Therefore, we pay attention to economies that is an important port of the Eco system.  One important conclusion is that one of the biggest barriers and problems was ‑‑ when I say about skills, I mean ability to create international strategies, ability to communicate, to develop, to target relevant audiences internationally and it was the biggest problem while we heard some SMEs that are quite successful internationally and they are driven.  So I would say that the conclusion can be that the problem is not data, but the problem can be also somewhere else.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thank you very much.  Do we have more interventions?  Questions?  If not, I suggest we make a last pass through the panelist.  And my question to you would be to not only sum up the question, but if you had a personal wish, what would you wish for the development in the policy space or in the market place, in this free flow of data, SME globalization, context, what is your personal take.  May I start with you, Margaret?

>> Margaret:  To be frank, I think on the side of the government, there must be some level.  It is necessary to change the way bureaucracy functions.  And on the other hand, I think that it's a kind of homework.  I think from the mental (?) what our SMEs needs, what are policies dedicated to SMEs.  We need to rethink it really to improve the business conditions and finally access to resources.  Thank you.

>> Thanks.  It seems that over the last couple of years, the complexity of the worse policy elements has increased.  So it has obviously four SMEs.  So my wish list would be that there is a realization when policy is made that there is extras made to the policy decision taken or externalities taken more into coned and at the same time, build a flexibility of the tools and how you can interest them.  So at the end of the day, it's almost like we need to share the circle somehow to get it right, but having extra tradeoffs is very important and use technology as a tool to enhance the policies as well.

>> So I think the word complex has been mentioned by my two colleagues.  I think a number of things that are happening at a very large scale causing it.  I knowledge there are three revolutions.  The digital revolution, which is an important level on the columns that have to advise sustainability.  And we also have a global revolution.  People are posing questions about equity and favors.  These things will build up speed.  This moment of policy brings back now to data and what's happening with data.  Is confusing for policy makers who happens goat lost in detail very sickly.  I don't think ‑‑ my wish would to be raise the level of debate.  It is very important to keep a little bit above the detail and I think come the back to ask the right questions which is always a fundamental source of wisdom.  Now those answers to that may not be ready.  There are many good reasons, but we also have questions we may not (?) about equity of sharing of data and a value.  It is a new economics of what competition means.  There are things we don't know the answers to, but let's pose good questions.  That would be my wish.

>> I think my wish would issue that as you said, James.  There's a lot happening which is reshaping our sort and I think our regulatory frameworks are not up to scratch when the GDPR was adopted a couple years ago, it was proceeded by a lot of concern and hype, but really one could argue it is least one that can considering the changes and complexity of the issues we are facing.  So we do need to ask our frameworks for that.  It is to insure policies are fit for challenges we will face.  I hope that will be the discussion we achieve in the future.  Thank you.

>> Everyone has been made not just by anyone.  I couldn't agree more to what has been raised.

From my perspective, there are two things I would think are very important regarding cross data flow and everything.  We can discuss today.  Number 1, let's look on the bright side of what is possible and really have a progressive approach grabbing the chances of what we can do especially to address the topics of what was mentioned.  Digitalization can be part of the solution and doesn't need to be part of the problem if we do it right.  And that is number 1.  And number 2, I think which also is linked to that is that ‑‑ let's ‑‑ let's try to calm down the debate a little bit going back to rational arguments.  A lot of things are emotionally driven from the discussion.  Especially when it comes to security, very, very interesting.  Very interesting aspects.  And less say factual base discussions and ‑‑ for sure, no doubt about that, but I think it's very important that to really ‑‑ really say for example, highest data security and we need to come back to national rebate and really good into what is the ‑‑ that is what we can achieve on an emotional level.  Thank you.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Excellent.  We're at the end of the discussion, but only at the end of this session.  I hope we did touch upon some of the right ‑‑ Siva, I forgot you.  Many excuses.

>> SIVA DEVIREDDY:  Not at all, Thomas.  Just a few closing points from my side.  We talked about the different aspects which can be hindering of the digital transformation we're talking about.  Data can be one of them, but there are issues around the skills that required.  But especially when we're talking about Connecting SMEs in global value chains or supply chains, I see a strong need not just in terms of a policy, but frameworks and tools which can make this happen especially in e‑Commerce and the kind of transformation that James has been talking about.  We're on the cusp of a major transformation.  So we need to lock at frameworks and small micro and have value chains and supply chains without the complexity which exists today.  I hope, you know, ICC and even bodies like the national trade center, shouldn't they work on this.  We need can come up with the coming years and frame work which makes it much more easier.  Thank you.

>> THOMAS GROB:  Thank you, Siva.  I'm not trying to summarize this now.  I hope you did address some of the right questions and I'm sure we'll continue this discussion at the next IGF.  I hope that digitalization is not the problem, but the solution.  And having said that, I thank everybody for their active participation and excellent insights and be sure we will put up a summary of this session.  Yes.  That's it for today.  I don't want to keep you from lunch.  Thanks, everybody.  Bye.

[APPLAUSE]

 

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