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Digital Europe

Europe is undergoing a digital revolution. Our TOGETHER statement highlights the key priorities for a sustainable Digital Europe.

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The Prague Statement on Digital Europe

We are building a European Digital Union for growth, a better future, new quality jobs and new forms of solidarity. A sustainable digital economy should:

• Support and inspire people to develop digital businesses, e-services and e-commerce that provide ‘digital solutions’ for people and society in Europe and globally.
• Create quality jobs for all, with a special emphasis on young people and women, and invest in quality jobs in digital public services.
• Invest and develop platforms in digital skills and literacy, creativity, innovation and a good working environment.
• Support young entrepreneurs to help them deal with risk, get access to funding and scale-up European SMEs.
• Develop digital infrastructure and promote universal access to an open, borderless internet.
• Ensure fair rules on remuneration for all in the digital economy: young people, journalists, creators and innovators, so that they can enjoy a fair living income.
• Develop new inclusive technologies for a data-driven economy, while promoting privacy by design to ensure that open data flows and big-data applications will respect personal privacy.
• Open up access to data including access to research and scientific outcomes.

The ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ will create digital winners and digital losers. In the European digital labour market, we should:

• Reduce the impact of the digital economy on social-protection systems and prevent inequalities.
• Develop and organise new ways to guarantee workers’ rights and workers’ representation, decent working conditions, fair competition and social protection for all.
• Ensure universal access to training and retraining in digital skills, in order to create the conditions for effective and equal participation in the digital single market for all citizens – young and old, rural and urban, well-off and poor. Support school curricula and teacher training in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), digital skills and coding.
• Clarify the employment status of platform workers and guarantee that this does not create new forms of social dumping. Organise the portability of workers’ rights as they move around in the European digital labour market.
• Create platforms for collective bargaining in the digital sector and extend collective agreements to individuals engaged in new forms of work.
• Allow citizens to have the choice to ‘switch off’ – support those who do not wish to embrace the digital revolution.
• Create fair competition, prevent tax dumping and distribute wealth by reviewing EU tax policy so that international companies contribute their fair share of national taxes and charges in countries where they operate and finance Europe’s economic and social model.

To fight for digital equality for all and guarantee the protection of consumers’ rights on the digital market, we should:

• Provide affordable and accessible connectivity for all at a local and regional level and across the whole of the EU, and fund it with a EU digital cohesion policy.
• Promote digital citizenship including e-democracy and digital civic education at local, national and European level.
• Incentivise all citizens, including those people living with disabilities, unemployed and migrant populations, to take advantage of the digital society.
• More online e-government services should be made available to all.
• Ensure that all users (irrespective of age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, country or economic status) are protected equally online, including protection against online harassment.
• Ensure that social media providers and users respect fundamental values including the rule of law.
• Guarantee the portability of legally acquired content when downloading abroad and roam-like-at-home when travelling.
• Support the development of technologies (3D printing, robotics and artificial intelligence) that can benefit people.
• Ensure that digital technology helps all citizens communicate and connect – so that all citizens are heard and listened to.

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This is the statement approved and adopted at the TOGETHER event in Prague, Czech Republic on December 2, 2016. But the debate goes on! Share your ideas on how to build a digital Europe.

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