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Reverse Engineering Europe's PSI Re-use Rules -- Towards an Integrated Conceptual Framework for PSI Re-use

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1 Author(s)

Despite various studies evincing the huge potential locked up in public sector information (PSI), this potential is far from being fully exploited. To a large extent, this failure is caused by the immensely complex legal labyrinth surrounding PSI re-use. This complexity works in two ways: public sector bodies do not comply with the regulatory framework and re-users do not avail themselves of the legal instruments offered, resulting in an unexploited economic potential. What makes the legal framework so complex is the transcending nature of PSI re-use, as it blends four areas of law - freedom of information law, ICT law, intellectual property law and competition law - that, throughout the years, have been regulated at a European, national and even sect oral level, but in isolation. The fundamental impact that ICT developments have on our society, subsequently also rocking the legal rules and underlying principles and axioms, makes the picture even more complicated. In this article, these legal frameworks are reverse engineered, demonstrating their interaction, culminating in a conceptual framework that allows public sector bodies and re-users (and courts where necessary) to apply and rely on the rules involved and to bring to the surface areas for policy action.

Published in:

e-Science Workshops, 2010 Sixth IEEE International Conference on

Date of Conference:

7-10 Dec. 2010