William Drake – Forced data localization and barriers to cross-border data flows: toward a multistakeholder approach – Pre 07 2017
FORCED DATA LOCALIZATION AND BARRIERS TO CROSS-BORDER DATA FLOWS: TOWARD A MULTISTAKEHOLDER APPROACH
They will be used as hash tags for easy searching on the wiki
The past few years have witnessed an increasingly intense debate on the world-wide growth of national data localization restrictions and barriers to Cross-Border Data Flows (CBDF). Localization proposals and policies typically involved requirements such as: data must be processed by entities physically within a national territory; data processing must include a specific level of “local content,” or the use of locally provided services or equipment; data must be locally stored or “resident” in a national jurisdiction; data processing and/or storage must conform to national rather than internationally accepted technical and operational standards; or data transfers must be routed largely or solely within a national or regional space when possible. In addition, In some cases, data transfers may require government approval based on certain conditions, or even be prohibited. Governments’ motivations for establishing such policies vary and may include goals such as promoting local industry, technology development, employment, and tax revenue; protecting (nominally, or in reality) the privacy of their citizens, and more broadly their legal jurisdiction; or advancing national security or an expansive vision of “cyber-sovereignty.”
The stakes here are high. For example, it has been estimated that data flows enabled economic activity that boosted global GDP by US $2.8 trillion in 2014 according to McKinsey, and that data flows now have a larger impact on growth than traditional flows of traded goods. The growth of localization measures and barriers to data transfers could reduce these values and significantly impair not only business operations but also many vital social structures that are predicated upon the free flow of data across a relatively open and unfragmented Internet. Accordingly, specific language limiting such policies has been included in a number of proposed trade agreements, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA). While the TPP has been rejected by the new US government and the forecast for other agreements is cloudy at best, it is possible that at least some of the policies in question are inconsistent with certain governments’ existing commitments under the World Trade Organization’s General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). Even so, the extent to which these issues should be addressed by trade instruments remains a highly controversial issue, with many in the global Internet community and civil society remaining very critical of non-transparent intergovernmental approaches to an increasingly important piece of global Internet governance, and many privacy advocates vehemently opposing the application of trade rules to personal data.
Accordingly, the purposes of this side event are three-fold. First, it will take stock of the growth of data localization measures and barriers to data flows and assess the scope and impacts of this trend. Second, it will consider what can be achieved via international trade instruments in the current geopolitical context. Third, and perhaps most importantly, it will explore the possibility of constructing a parallel track of multistakeholder dialogue and decisionmaking that is balanced and enjoys the support of diverse actors and perspectives. In particular, we will consider whether “soft law” approaches involving sufficient monitoring and reporting could help to ensure that data policies are not applied in a manner that constitutes arbitrary discrimination or disguised digital protectionism; and do not impose restrictions that are greater than are required to achieve legitimate public policy objectives.
The roundtable discussion will provide input to a report on the topic that is being prepared for the World Economic Forum (WEF) by William J. Drake for release in the autumn of 2017. The report will build on a prior report Internet Fragmentation: An Overview by Drake, Vint Cerf, and Wolfgang Kleinwachter that was released by the WEF in January 2016 http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_FII_Internet_Fragmentation_An_Overview_2016.pdf and provided the framework for a session held at the 2016 WSIS Forum https://www.itu.int/net4/wsis/forum/2016/Agenda/Session/169 ; as well as on the outputs of the WEF/ICTSD E15 Initiative on Strengthening the global trade and investment system http://e15initiative.org .
Highlights of the issues outlined in the report will be presented, panelists will dialogue in response, and then the majority of time will be for open interactive discussion with all participants.
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Please provide name and institution for all people you list here.
- William J. Drake [moderator]
International Fellow & Lecturer Media Change & Innovation Division, IPMZ University of Zurich, Switzerland
- Anriette Esterhuysen
Executive Director Association for Progressive Communications
- Lise Fuhr
Director General European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association (ETNO)
- Nigel Hickson
Vice President for IGO Engagement Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)
- Wolfgang Kleinwächter
Professor Emeritus Aarhus University (& former Board of Directors, ICANN)
- Andrei Kolesnikov
Director The Internet of Things Association, Russia
- Konstantinos Komaitis
Director, Policy Development The Internet Society
- Gonzalo Lopez-Barajas
Manager, Public Policy and Internet Telefónica, S.A.
- Marília Maciel
Digital Policy Senior Researcher DiploFoundation
- Erika Mann
Senior European Policy Advisor Covington & Burling LLP (& former Board of Directors, ICANN)
- Thomas Schneider
Vice-Director Federal Office of Communications Government of Switzerland
- Lee Tuthill
Counsellor for Trade in Services The World Trade Organization
Please provide a short summary from the outcome of your session. Bullet points are fine.