The slides from the BYTE Final Conference are now available!

The BYTE Final Conference was held in London on 9th February 2017.  The following external experts that presented at the conference on various data-related topics have given us permission to share their slides.  Below you can upload the following presentations:

    1. Towards Smart Traffic Analysis and Reasoning in Large Cities – Freddy Lecue, Accenture Technology Labs
    2. Data Challenges in Genomic Medicine – Hywel Williams, GOSgene
    3. Healthcare & Big data: public interest, personal health and privacy protection – Paul van der Wal , NIDAP Research
    4. Is data the new gold for industry? – Marc Engels, Flanders Make
    5. Towards the Harmonisation of open city data across cities in Spain – Oscar Corcho, Ontology Eningeering Group, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid
    6. Data driven innovation in local government – Lucy Knight, Devon County Council and ODI Devon
    7. Scalable data access: Lower-cost. Higher-impact environmental compliance – David Cameron, SIRIUS Centre for Research-based innovation

BYTE activities at the Privacy Camp and CPDP 2017

BYTE continues to build its Big Data Community and organises a panel at the Privacy Camp 2017 on how civil society can engage in the policy debates on Big Data. BYTE will present its research results on the societal externalities of big data and discuss with representatives from NGOs and the EDPS how these can be addressed. Speakers will be Christian D’Cunha (EDPS), Diego Naranjo (EDRi), Estelle Massé (AccessNow) and Hans Lammerant (VUB and BYTE).

Privacy Camp is an annual civil society meeting held the day before the start of CPDP, a leading conference on data protection and privacy in Brussels. The event brings together digital rights advocates, members of NGOs, civil rights groups as well as academics and policy-makers from all around Europe and beyond to discuss the most pressing issues facing human rights online. The Privacy Camp 2017 takes place on 24th January 2017. More information and programme can be found on the Privacy Camp website.

BYTE will also be present on CPDP and participates on 27th January in a panel organised by the FutureTDM project on the impact of data protection regulation for the uptake of advanced data analysis technologies like text and data mining. A taster for this debate can be found in the blog text BYTE published on the FutureTDM-website.


The Big Data Roadmap Workshop

On September 19th-20th, the Byte project held a session at Global Forum in Eindhoven. Participants took part in BYTE’s central production: the Big Data Roadmap. This workshop focused on a policy roadmap and followed the previous workshop on a research roadmap collocated with the European Data Forum 2016 in Eindhoven.

During the workshop, participants were part of a role-playing game to prioritize the roadmap’s items and help us to adjust our findings. Participants helped to foster the positive effects of big data and minimize their negative externalities.

The policy roadmap workshop will be followed by the first BYTE Big Data Community workshop, co-located with the BDVA Summit in Valencia, Spain, next November. We hope to see you there!

Stakeholders discuss how to address positive and negative impacts of big data in the research roadmapping workshop

One of the primary goals of the BYTE project is to devise a research and
policy roadmap that provides incremental steps necessary to achieve the
BYTE vision and guidelines to assist industry and scientists to address
externalities in order to improve innovation and competitiveness.

The research roadmap focuses on what research, knowledge, technologies
or skills are necessary in order to capture the economic and social
benefits associated with the use of big data. It considers the positive
and negative externalities and social impacts associated with big data,
previously identified and analysed in the BYTE project.

Another important aim of the present roadmap is to lead to action and
collaboration among the BYTE Big Data Community members, who should
adopt and update the roadmap after completion of the BYTE project.

In our last workshop, collocated with the European Data Forum 2016 in
Eindhoven, more than 30 participants discussed, validated and
prioritised research topics to capture the positive societal impacts of
big data and diminish the negative ones. The workshop also witnessed the
foundation and launch of the BYTE Big Data Community.

The next roadmapping workshop will focus on the policy aspects, and will
take place again in Eindhoven in September. It will be followed by the
first BYTE Big Data Community workshop, co-located with the BDVA Summit
in Valencia, Spain, next November. You are warmly invited!

BYTE session at the 4th GEOSS Science and Technology Stakeholder Workshop


BYTE representatives attended the 4th GEOSS Science and Technology Stakeholder Workshop, held on March 24-26 2015, in Norfolk (VA), USA. There they gathered first-hand feedback from the Group on Earth Observation (GEO) community, which contributed to the BYTE environment case study on Earth and space observation portals and associated initiatives.

For a decade now, GEO has been driving the interoperability of many thousands of individual space-based, airborne and in-situ Earth observations around the world. These separate systems often yield snapshot assessments, leading to critical gaps in scientific understanding. GEO is addressing such gaps by coordinating the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), a global network of content providers providing easy, open access to organized observations that enable an increasingly integrated view of our changing Earth. This fuller picture is an indispensable foundation for sound decision making for a number of different users ranging from developed and developing nations battling drought and disease, to emergency managers making evacuation decisions, farmers making planting choices, companies evaluating energy costs, and coastal communities concerned about sea-level rise etc.

In addition to policy and governance issues, GEOSS poses formidable scientific and technological challenges. The Science and Technology Stakeholders of GEO are collaborating to address these in a number of ways, including a series of workshops focused on the scope of the future GEOSS and the concepts and technologies that can support a future-oriented “system of systems”, providing observations and practice-relevant knowledge to a wide range of users. Participants in the workshops include technology developers; experts in data management, integration, and analysis; developers of knowledge systems; and user representatives.

The organizers of the 4th GEOSS S&T Stakeholder Workshop offered BYTE the opportunity to chair one of the breakout sessions of the rich two-day program.  This was the Breakout Session 1.1: Cloud and Big Data Revolutions, on Wednesday 25 March. CNR’s researcher Lorenzo Bigagli, who leads the effort on establishing the BYTE Big Data Community, presented the project and moderated the discussion based on the attendees’ own experience, starting from the very fundamental question: what are the potential values, not only to future GEOSS, but also to anyone who might benefit, from exploiting the data super nova in the environment sector?

Bob Chen, from Columbia University, acted as rapporteur for the session summarized the discussion in the following points:

GEOSS has always been about big data in environment sector!

  • IoT and IoP—and the “Internet of Location”—are already becoming part of GEOSS.
  • GEOSS needs to facilitate new data integration and to address policies, privacy : e.g., anonymization, processes to control use, legal interoperability, quality labelling/trust processes.
  • E-infrastructure is needed to support open access, legal interoperability, education/changing data culture.
  • Benefits of using data to support Society inevitably come with risks of potential misuse of data; GEO has to be supportive and follow member policies.

All the feedback gathered has been integrated into BYTE Deliverable 3.2, Case Study Reports on positive and negative externalities within the environment sector, and is hence contributing to shaping the BYTE vision, roadmap, and methodology.

The event has also been a useful opportunity for project dissemination, in particular through the BYTE Fact and Info Sheets, in preparation for the third phase of the project. This is where the BYTE Big Data Community will be launched among the European Big Data stakeholders, including the geospatial sector and those who participate in the GEOSS Science & Technology Stakeholder network.

BYTE and Big data Europe to co-lead interactive session on positive and negative impacts of big data at the BDVA Small Big Data Summit.



BYTE, in conjunctionwith Big Data Europe, will host an interactive working session on  “Multidisciplinary aspects of big data in Europe” at the BDVA Small Big Data Summit to be held at the Hague, the Netherlands, from 2 & 3 March 2016. The session will explore the positive and negative aspects of big data, such as economic, legal, political and social and ethical issues that arise in relation to big data use across key sectors of the European economy. This will be followed by an interactive session to brainstorm solutions that could assist in addressing the challenges presented by big data use in Europe. We welcome all participants at the BDVA Small Big Data Summit to attend the interactive session.



Evaluating and addressing societal externalities of big data

The BYTE-project has made a comprehensive evaluation of the societal externalities and of best practices to address these externalities within the BYTE case studies.  The evaluation findings are presented in D4.2 Evaluating and addressing positive and negative societal externalities. The report reveals a broad agenda for policy-makers to address these externalities, consisting of updating legal frameworks, the promotion of big data practices through public investments and enabling policies and an active policy to keep markets open and competitive. Regulators and stakeholders also have an important role in developing tools and approaches to mainstream societal concerns into the design process of and the implementation of big data practices.

The economic externalities are categorized into operational efficiency, innovation, new knowledge, business models, and employment. In order to diminish the negative economic impacts and to augment the positive effects, a set of best practices has been devised. Governments and public institutions can promote big data practices through public investments and enabling policies, which points to the need to develop a comprehensive big data policy. The best practices concerning corporations point mainly at a need to change the mind-set in order to perceive the opportunities of big data. These best practices are not only useful to capture positive economic externalities, but appeared useful for positive social externalities as well.

However, this also necessitates attention for adequate legal frameworks to create legal certainty and diminish negative effects, which now cause distrust and reluctance towards big data. Some general conclusions to do so can be drawn. First needs to be checked if the balance struck between different objectives and interests in the current practice or legal framework is still delivering an optimal result. If not, it will need adapting. Second, legal mechanisms based on individual transactions or individual control lead to high transaction costs in a context of a larger amount of data flows. Such mechanisms become dysfunctional or they present barriers to big data practices. They need to be substituted for collective or aggregate mechanisms of control and decision-making. Third, a specific method to reduce transaction costs is to move a large amount of the decision-making to the design phase and to create standardised solutions. Privacy-by-design has become a practical example of such approach. Similar work needs to be done to integrate other social concerns, like discrimination, and to broaden this approach to include the whole range of legal, organisational and technical safeguards.

Dealing with the political externalities entails an active policy to keep markets open and competitive, where the specific ways of how a company can acquire a dominant position need to be taken into account and addressed with adequate tools. Further it concerns efforts by states to retain their regulative capacity. These efforts have to be accompanied with adequate policies and safeguards to preserve the balance with citizens’ rights and with other states.

BYTE presents the positive and negative impacts of Big Data across sectors in Dublin

BYTE panel


The BYTE project is exploring scientific and industrial organizations in Europe to gain a greater understanding of the positive and negative externalities associated with Big Data. In our last workshop at the NDRC in Dublin, the results of this research were presented, including:
– A series of case studies and focus groups on Big Data in various sectors such as environment, commerce, smart cities, culture, energy, healthcare, and transport
– Horizontal analysis to identify the positive and negative impacts, practices, barriers or outcomes of Big Data projects that are shared across different case study sectors
– Evaluation of societal impacts as evidenced within the different disciplines using the case studies and the horizontal analysis as a backdrop

The slides of the presentations are available here:

– Big data societal externalitites. Results from the BYTE case studies (Guillermo Vega-Gorgojo)

– Big Data in a Digital City. Key Insights from the Smart City Case Study (Sonja Zillner)

-Horizontal analysis of societal externalities (Hans Lammerant)

– Addressing economic externalities (Guillermo Vega-Gorgojo)

– Addressing non economical externalities (Hans Lammerant)

BYTE meets the Big and Open Data community in Vienna in the European Data Economy Workshop

On 15th of September the BYTE partners attended the European Data Economy Workshop to present the last outcomes of the project and discuss on the most important activities around the European Data Economy with stakeholders from the Big and Open Data community.

Rachel Finn from Trilateral Research & Consulting introduces BYTE findings
Rachel Finn from Trilateral Research & Consulting introduces BYTE findings


Big Data Externalities presentation:

More information: