Data-Driven Innovation

Big Data for Growth and Well-Being

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Today, the generation and use of huge volumes of data are redefining our “intelligence” capacity and our social and economic landscapes, spurring new industries, processes and products, and creating significant competitive advantages. In this sense, data-driven innovation (DDI) has become a key pillar of 21st-century growth, with the potential to significantly enhance productivity, resource efficiency, economic competitiveness, and social well-being.

Greater access to and use of data create a wide array of impacts and policy challenges, ranging from privacy and consumer protection to open access issues and measurement concerns, across public and private health, legal and science domains. This report aims to improve the evidence base on the role of DDI for promoting growth and well-being, and provide policy guidance on how to maximise the benefits of DDI and mitigate the associated economic and societal risks.




Early in 2011 the OECD began a project on New Sources of Growth: Knowledgebased Capital (KBC). The project was inspired by findings from the OECD’s Innovation Strategy, originally published in 2010 and now updated to 2015 (forthcoming). According to these findings, many innovating firms invest, beyond R&D, in a broader range of intangibles assets including i) intellectual property (e.g. patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, designs); ii) digital data and information (e.g. data and analytics); and iii) economic competencies (e.g. organisational capital and firm-specific skills). These intangible assets are referred to as knowledge-based capital (KBC).


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