Institute News  |  11/26/2019

Consumer Rights Days 2019: Data Access, Consumer Interests and Public Interest Grounds

On 12 and 13 December the “Verbraucherrechtstage 2019” (Consumer Rights Days) will take place at the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection. The Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition is assisting the Ministry by taking care of the scientific program, chairing the event and publishing its results. Contributions by renowned scholars and the exchange with political decision-makers are intended to help identify the need for reform and the design of future rules that promote access to data in the digital age.

The Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection
The Consumer Rights Days 2019 will take place in the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection in Berlin, Photo: Xander Heinl/photothek

Digitization is changing the economy and society at a rapid pace. In order to benefit from its advantages, access to data is essential for businesses, consumers, the state and civil society. At this year’s Consumer Rights Days in Berlin, representatives primarily from scholarship and politics will discuss how data access should be regulated, taking into account the economic foundations and the existing legal framework.


The event, which is taken care of in scientific regards by the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition under the leadership of its Director Josef Drexl will take place on 12 and 13 December at the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection. The OECD and the European Commission pointed out some years ago how important it is to guarantee the free flow of data for the development of the digital economy and innovation as well as in the context of numerous public interest grounds. Yet the scholarly debate on the need for new data access rules and their design has only started to emerge recently.


The Consumer Rights Days 2019 not only aim at intensifying this debate. In bringing together scholars and political decision-makers, they also strive to prepare the theoretical foundations for future legislative initiatives. Particular attention will be paid to the rights of consumers, who are not only interested in protection of their personal data. To reap the benefits from competition in the digital sector, consumers also have an economic interest in access and portability of data that businesses collect through their use of connected devices or digital services.


Get the program here