In its Communication “Building a European data economy” the EU Commission discusses the introduction of a new exclusive property right on data (“data producer right”) for non-personal (or anonymised) machine-generated data, and mandatory access rights to privately held data for achieving more access, transfer and reuse of data, esp. in the context of “Internet of Things” applications. This article analyzes the problem of “rights on data” from an economic perspective (incentive problem, data markets, bargaining power problems, access problems in multi-stakeholder situations) and the reasonings and proposals in the Communication from an economic perspective. Important results are that a “data producer right” cannot be recommended but that access rights to data can be part of specifically tailored data governance solutions in certain sectors.


Rights on Data: The EU Communication “Building a European Data Economy” from an Economic Perspective, in: Sebastian Lohsse, Reiner Schulze, Dirk Staudenmayer (eds.), Trading Data in the Digital Economy: Legal Concepts and Tools, Baden-Baden: Nomos 2017, pp. 109 – 133.