Territorial indicators based on big data

Context

The potential of big data to inform public policy decision making is widely acknowledged, recently most prominently in the European Commission’s communication “Towards a common European data space” (2018). This data can be more timely, more context specific and more spatially precise than traditional official statistics. At a European level, ESSnet Big Data I project (2016 – 2018)  and ESSnet Big Data II project (2018 – 2020)  within the European Statistical System (ESS) have engaged National Statistical Agencies and other stakeholders in exploring possibilities of using big data. At the global level, UN’s Global Working Group on Big Data for Official Statistics  is similarly engaged in exploring the use of various big data, for instance, scanner data, social media data, etc.

The big private tech companies (like social media platforms), which are storing big data, have an advantage over other big data holders as they can provide a single entry for a European wide coverage when it comes to territorial analysis. In March 2020 the European Commission reached a landmark agreement with Airbnb, Booking, Expedia Group and Tripadvisor on sharing tourism data which will allow Eurostat to publish data on short-stay accommodations offered via these platforms across the EU.

Main objectives

The main aim is to contract a service provider who will engage with private digital platform providers to build a framework that would allow big data sharing and extraction on a regular basis for the purpose of developing territorial indicators. In addition,  data collected on a sample of selected big data-based territorial indicators along with a brief description of the territorial trends will be provided.

This activity will be in line with the European Commission’s proposal to intensify the business-to-government (B2G) data sharing, as outlined in the European Commission’s communication “Towards a common European data space” (2018). The main focus of this research will be on private digital platforms, which can provide comparable data for a European wide territorial analysis, ideally covering all ESPON countries. Thus, geographically limited big data (for instance, provided by only one local operator) will not be examined.

Main outcomes envisaged

The main outcomes of this activity will be:

  • List of private digital platforms which could provide big data for a European wide territorial analysis;
  • Framework of cooperation with private digital platforms, which would allow big data sharing and extraction on a regular basis for the purpose of developing territorial indicators for public policy analysis. This framework will include overarching principles that shall guide the action of ESPON in this domain, following the European Commission’s established principles and guidance on acquiring and sharing private data;
  • A list of territorial indicators, which could be developed using big data from private digital platforms along with the information (methodology) on how to interpret the data behind the indicators;
  • Data collected on a sample of selected territorial indicators along with a brief description of the territorial trends, illustrated by maps and graphs.

Contractors

  • Prognos AS, DE (lead contractor)
  • DevStat, ES

Budget

€ 113 900

Lifetime

December 2020 – October 2021

Deliveries

  • Inception Delivery, 16 February 2021
  • Interim Delivery, 15 June 2021
  • Final Delivery, 14 September 2021

Contact

Zintis Hermansons (Project Expert) [email protected] , Caroline Clause (Financial Expert) [email protected]