(5 June 2023) On Monday, 5th June, EPSU and 40 other European organisations launched a civil society statement focused on democratic digital infrastructures which proposes the establishment of a European Public Digital Infrastructure Fund.
The signatories of the statement – including EPSU and coordinators Commons Network and Open Future - comprise various European organisations engaged in digital rights, digital commons, platform cooperativism, and democracy, as well as trade unions. Their objective is to lay the foundation and inspire European policymakers to embrace a new era of digital policymaking in Europe. This initiative is a response to the European Declaration on Digital Rights and Principles for the Digital Decade and builds upon its aspiration to foster "participation in the digital public space" through the promotion of interoperability, transparency, open technologies, and standards. By doing so, it aims to bolster trust in technology and empower consumers to make autonomous and informed choices.
The civil society statement advocates for the development of digital spaces that are more socially and environmentally conscious, while safeguarding the sovereignty of communities and society as a whole. EPSU and the other signatories call upon European policymakers to invest in digital commons and public digital infrastructure, creating digital public spaces that can serve as viable alternatives to the dominant, centralised commercial platforms of today. It is crucial that digital public spaces take center stage in the European Union's digital policy agenda during the next European Commission's term.
This statement aligns with EPSU's previous positions, emphasising the need for the EU to take stronger measures to ensure a people-centric digital transition. In 2021, EPSU joined forces with over 70 organisations, urging the Commission to prevent an overrepresentation of big tech in the Digital Services Agreement. EPSU continues to advocate for human-centered digital governance as the Regulation for a European Health Data Space progresses through the legislative process. You can read EPSU's position on the EHDS here.
By joining this coalition and endorsing the civil society statement, EPSU reaffirms its commitment to shaping a digital landscape that prioritises democratic values, promotes societal well-being, and upholds the rights of individuals.
Read the statement here.