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CGD Policy Blogs

 
Map showing the countries that have passed data privacy laws since 2010, mostly low and middle income countries. It also shows the countries that have pending legislation

Addressing Cross-Border Spillovers in Data Policy: The Need for a Global Approach

Global debates about data governance standards have primarily reflected the priorities and needs of rich countries, with less wealthy countries left in the role of “standards takers.” More needs to be done to ensure that digital governance policies pursued by the world’s largest economies do not create unintended consequences that make it harder for other countries to support a strong domestic digital economy and participate in the global digital economy.

Illustration of a surveillance camera singling out one person in a crowd.

A League of Digital Democracies: How Building Consensus on Digital Norms Would Boost the Biden Administration’s Effort to Support Democracy Abroad

President-elect Biden has stated his intention to rebuild values-based alliances and reassert the United States’ role in promoting democracy abroad. Limiting the spread of the digital authoritarianism model that China has pioneered at home and abroad will be key to this effort. To succeed, the US must rally like-minded liberal democracies around a set of principles for the digital age that promote shared prosperity and personal freedom. Failure to do so will allow countries like China and Russia to exert greater influence on the digital governance rules that other countries choose to follow.

Abstract image of a network, with two sides joining together

Governing Data for Development: Where Are We Now?

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrust digital issues into the spotlight by highlighting the importance of government access to accurate and timely information for public health surveillance and accelerating the shift towards a digital-first approach in many countries, due to the need to provide services at a distance. It has also brought to the forefront difficult questions about the limits that should be placed on governments and companies that seek to use potentially sensitive data to monitor the spread of disease and target public health efforts.

Screenshot of a video from the event Data as a Development Issue

Reconciling Calls for “More and Better Data” with “Responsible Data Use”

The “more and better data” movement is based on the premise that well-intentioned governments can better serve the poor and vulnerable if they have basic information about them. Until recently, this notion would have seemed uncontroversial. But growing concern about the risks created by the misuse of data—particularly personal data—has led to a shift in attitudes in the development community.

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