Europe has set itself lofty goals for digital transformation over the next decade. While continuing to set global standards for regulation, the bloc aims to jumpstart an era of technological growth powered by greater connectivity, increased digital skills and digitalization of public services.
During this Digital Decade, the EU aims to bring forth a new generation of tech “unicorns” and unleash unprecedented research capabilities in quantum computing, big data and tech manufacturing. Member countries have underscored that achieving these goals is crucial to ensuring the bloc’s “digital sovereignty” amid fears Europe is falling behind the U.S. and China.
But how can Europe make sure the reality measures up to its ambitions? How can the bloc leverage the huge resources brought to bear for the pandemic recovery to catch the next wave of technological innovation, and make sure that all Europeans lead the next wave of digital transformations?
Questions to be addressed include:
- Where does the EU stand on its “Path to the Digital Decade”? Is it on track to reach its 2030 digital targets? Is this plan achievable?
- How can Europe remain competitive in the long-term?
- Is there political will to make Europe a digital leading power on the global scale? Is Europe ready to step up its game or will it continue trying to catch up with its neighbors?
- How digital technology will impact European businesses, workers and the infrastructure required?
- Can Europe fill the gap in the EU toolbox to combine funding from member states, the EU budget and private investment to avoid a two-speed Europe?