ConPolicy Newsletter 2022 – 3

Dear Reader,

like you, we are deeply troubled by the war in Ukraine and are thinking about how we as an institute can make a small contribution to the people fleeing and what consequences must be drawn from Germany's dependence on Russian energy supplies. So far, we have been involved in refugee aid and with donations.

If you need support with your aid projects or are interested in an exchange of ideas, please feel free to contact us! Maybe we can do something together!

Otherwise, we inform you in this newsletter as every month about:

We wish you an exciting read!

Kind regards!

Your ConPolicy team

  News about ConPolicy

Web seminar series of the Competence Centre 'Sustainable Consumption' on sustainable online trade
ConPolicy participates in web seminar 'Product and customer communication' in online trade

The Competence Centre for Sustainable Consumption is organising two web seminars for online retailers on March 17 and 24, 2022 . The aim of the seminars is to show options of sustainable online trade. The first event on March 17, 2022, will focus on product and customer communication. ConPolicy project manager Dr. Otmar Lell will give the introductory keynote speech on the topic of 'Environmental product information in online retail – requirements, obstacles and solutions'.

At the follow-up event on March 24, concrete options for action for the most ecological shop operation possible and more environmentally compatible logistics will be presented.

The event programme and registration options are available here.

Consumer-friendly annual statements for condominiums
Publication of a ConPolicy study requested by the DIN Consumer Council

On December 21, 2021, the DIN Consumer Council published the study prepared by ConPolicy on the development of a new standard for annual and operating statements for condominiums. The background to the study is that condominium owners often have problems with poorly structured and difficult to understand annual accounts. Until now, the annual and operating accounts, which are published annually by the administration of the condominiums, have not been subject to any special requirements. As a result, complex figures are often produced that are hardly comprehensible to the condominium owners. The DIN Consumer Council commissioned the study, which has now been published, with the aim of drafting a consumer-friendly standard proposal for the preparation of annual and operating accounts.

First, an inventory of the current practice of annual statements was carried out and relevant problems were identified on the basis of literature analyses, expert discussions and the analysis of annual statements. This was followed by the development of a model for reasonable annual statements. In addition, existing templates and decision-making aids for annual accounts were identified, analyzed and evaluated. From this, a draft for a standard proposal was derived, which will be fed into the standardization work.

The long version of the study can be found here.

Organisation of consumer protection in selected European countries
Publication of a ConPolicy study commissioned by the Austrian Ministry of Social Affairs

ConPolicy was commissioned by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection to conduct a study on the organisation of consumer protection in selected European countries. The aim of the project was to enable conclusions for the future orientation of consumer protection in Austria by analysing successful examples in the European environment.

With the help of a literature research and expert interviews, the structure and the performance of tasks of selected consumer organisations were presented. Representatives of these consumer organisations presented their approaches at a stakeholder workshop and offered interest groups and politicians from Austria the opportunity to exchange views and ask questions. On this basis, a transfer workshop was held in order to draw concrete conclusions from the impressions gained for the possibilities for the future orientation of consumer work in Austria.

The preparation of successful examples from the European environment is available for download on the ConPolicy website here.

The impact of influencers on advertising and consumer protection
Publication of a ConPolicy-study requested by the IMCO Committee of the European Parliament

The study "The impact of influencers on advertising and consumer protection in the Single Market" conducted by ConPolicy and VVA was published today. The study was requested by the European Parliament Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) to investigate the impact of influencers on advertising and consumer protection in the Single Market.

First, the study defined the term influencer and identified characteristics that are crucial for classifying a person as an influencer. Subsequently, the importance of influencers as actors in the Single market was analyzed from the perspective of companies and consumers. In addition, an overview was given of the regulations to which influencers and their marketing activities are currently subject within the EU. Influencer marketing practices were identified that are compliant with consumer rights, as well as those that violate consumer rights. To combat marketing practices that harm consumers, recommendations were developed on legislative and non-legislative measures to address consumer protection issues. The impact of the Covid 19 pandemic on the role of influencers was also examined.

The full version of the study can be found here.

  Consumer policy news

New Data Act: Important for consumer data decision-making sovereignty

Today, the European Commission presented a proposal for the Data Act including new rules for the data economy on data-sharing including conditions and... Read more

Metaversum still largely unknown but of interest to many consumers

Today, the digital association Bitkom published new survey results on the digital vision of the metaverse. According to the results, 17 percent of... Read more

Consumer protection
Early warning network identifies dubious practices in online reviews

Today, the Federation of German Consumer Organizations (vzbv) presented current investigation results from the early warning network of consumer... Read more

'Eco barometer 2021' shows trend towards growing demand of organic products

Today, the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) presented results of the survey ‘Eco barometer 2021’ on the consumption of organic... Read more

Environmental awareness in Germany 2020: Majority of Germans supports more ambitious environmental and climate policy

The German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV) and the Federal Environment Agency... Read more

These are the most popular online payment options

Today, the digital association Bitkom published new survey results on online payment methods for consumers. According to the results, 42 percent of... Read more

  Recommended reading

Mandatory insurance against natural hazards – New developments, constitutional conformity and public acceptance

The flood disaster of summer 2021 has shown that Germany is fully affected by climate change, but is not sufficiently adapted to the consequences of... Read more

Borges, G.
Potentials of artificial intelligence with a view to data protection law

Artificial intelligence (AI) and data protection are in a necessary state of tension. AI systems require data in order to develop their potential, but... Read more

Personalized consumer information: A workshop report

Why should the SVRV deal with such a topic, namely the personalization of consumer information? The reason is twofold: Personalization is part of... Read more

Belz, J. et al.
Environmental awareness in Germany 2020 – Results of a representative population survey

The 2020 Environmental Awareness Survey shows that environmental and climate protection has not lost its importance despite the Corona pandemic. 65... Read more

Friedl, C. & R. Blanck
Reshaping mobility – A tax and duty concept for climate-friendly and socially fair transport up to 2050

Mobility must be redirected to make a fundamental contribution to achieving climate targets. For more justice, social compatibility must be... Read more

CI & the Mozilla Foundation
A consumer investigation into personalized pricing

Personalized pricing is a form of price discrimination that involves setting prices at a different level for each individual consumer, based on an... Read more