Clarification of applicable legal framework for full, co- or self-regulatory actions in the cloud computing sector
Final report - Study
This report was prepared by time.lex and Spark as a part of the European Commission’s study on the clarification of the applicable legal framework for full, co- or self-regulatory actions in the cloud computing sector (SMART 2015/0018). It contains an overview of the main characteristics, pros and cons of regulatory, self-regulatory and co-regulatory approaches to the cloud computing market. In order to ground this conceptual overview in the realities of the cloud market in Europe and in a broader international perspective, this is followed by an overview of regulatory, self-regulatory and... co-regulatory approaches, drawing upon a sample of schemes identified in five Member States (France, Germany, Greece, Spain and the UK) and three non-European countries (New Zealand, Taiwan and the USA). In total, nine self-and co-regulatory schemes were examined in detail with respect to their main characteristics, including their scope, participants, governance scheme, enforcement approaches, and the underlying business model. This factual overview of current self-and co-regulatory schemes is complemented by a high-level outlook of the development of the market for cloud services in the EU, including an assessment of the economic cost and viability of self- and co-regulatory schemes and their accessibility to SMEs. Finally, the Report provides its conclusions and recommendations regarding the role and potential impact of co- and self-regulatory schemes.