ConPolicy Newsletter 2020 - 1

Dear Reader,


ConPolicy wishes a good start into the new decade! In the first newsletter of the year ConPolicy informs you about:

We wish you an exciting read!

Kind regards!

Your ConPolicy team

  News about ConPolicy

Scientific and strategic services
ConPolicy supports strategic development of the Competence Centre for Sustainable Consumption

Four years ago, the "National Programme for Sustainable Consumption" (NPNK) was adopted by the German government. As part of this programme, the Competence Centre for Sustainable Consumption (KNK) was installed at the Federal Environment Agency (UBA) in March 2017. The KNK plays a key role in supporting the implementation of the National Programme for Sustainable Consumption by taking on organisational and scientific activities as well as public relations work for sustainable consumption and programme implementation. 
Together with co2online and Öko-Institut, ConPolicy supports the strategic development of the KNK on three different service levels.

ConPolicy is responsible in particular for the development of a strategic concept and for supporting the organisation of a national conference.

For more information please follow this link.

Study financed by the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection
New project regarding the potential of consumer protection technologies for consumer protection and empowerment

Digitalization and its impact on consumers are one of the defining issues in national and international consumer policy discourse. However, this discussion has so far lacked an analytically and empirically based systematic discourse on how digital technologies could and should be used by consumer policy actors in order to protect the rights and interests of consumers and to empower them more effectively and efficiently. Moreover, there is still a shortcoming of platforms on which the discourse on this issue is conducted between technology experts and practitioners, for example, from consumer organisations and authorities.

Therefore, the project aims to explore the potential of digital technologies for the enhancement of consumer interests, to identify relevant fields of application in a dialogue between technology experts and representatives of consumer organisations and to disseminate the results in academia and practice. This project is financed by the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection.

For more information please follow this link.

Artificial intelligence and consumer policy: Opportunities for consumer informatics
New ConPolicy publication

As digitization progresses, new questions arise for consumer policy. The Consumer Research Forum of the Consumer, Market and Policy Research Centre (CCMP) on the topic of "Artificial Intelligence and consumer policy: Opportunities for consumer informatics", which took place in April 2019, aimed at defining the young term "consumer informatics", presenting good practices and identifying research needs. It was organized by the CCMP in cooperation with the ConPolicy institute for consumer policy, the European University Institute (EUI) in the Ministry of Rural Affairs and Consumer Protection of Baden-Wuerttemberg (MLR).

The various contributions have now been summarized in a publication. Two ConPolicy experts contributed to this publication. In his article Prof. Dr. Christian Thorun deals with the question of how digital technologies can be used to attain consumer policy goals. Consumer protection technologies are suitable, among other things, for meeting consumer protection, empowerment and law enforcement goals of consumer policy. Digital innovations can also support online consumer advice.

In her article, Dr. Sara Elisa Kettner introduces the PrivacyGuard. In the form of a prototypical app client, browser extension or data protection analyzer, it detects excessive data collection by smartphone apps. This helps users to achieve more transparency and control over their data. The PrivacyGuard scanner aims to promote self-determination, provide information, take individual preferences into account and offer consumers concrete options for action. Thus, it is a tool for advancing consumer policy through digital innovation.

The contributions were published in the booklet of the consumer research forum "Artificial Intelligence and Consumer Policy: Opportunities of Consumer Informatics".

  Consumer policy news

Hidden costs on mediation platforms

Today, the market watchdog team “Digital world” at the consumer association Bavaria published its results on online mediation platforms in the service... Read more

Consumer behavior
Most consumers buy Christmas gifts online

Just in time for the holiday season, Bitkom has published a survey on consumer Christmas shopping today. It shows that the majority of German... Read more

The new Green Deal from a consumer perspective

Today, the European Commission presented its Green Deal, which includes actions to tackle climate change and to make Europe climate neutral by 2050.... Read more

Financial services
Advice for consumers regarding online or mobile banking

Today, the European Banking Authority (EBA) released a Factsheet, which helps European consumers to make better and more informed choices on financial... Read more

  Recommended reading

Schuler, J. et al.
When green electricity leads to more energy consumption

Besides the transition to renewable energies and less greenhouse gas emissions, climate policy also entails lower energy consumption. Politicians are... Read more

RASFF: The Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed – 2018 annual report

2019, the year in which this report appears, is an important year for the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) network as it marks the 40th... Read more

Riechert, A.
Data portability – Policy paper

The Stiftung Datenschutz discussed the topic of data portability in three workshops with participation of experts from politics, supervisory... Read more

Gracia, A. & J. Barreiro Hurle
Making sense of information overload: Consumer ranking of nutritional claims in cereal based products

As a result of increased consumer awareness, demand for healthier food products is increasing day by day. Consumers seek healthier versions of food... Read more

Customer loyalty schemes – Final report

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has examined consumer and competition issues that are associated with consumer-facing... Read more