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Putting the Human into Data-Driven Economies

Advertising-driven “attention economy” services reinforce an overused, but pithy, quotation that “If you’re not paying for the product, you are not the customer; you are the product being sold”. Regardless of the contested truth of that statement, the popularity of the sentiment reflects a public perception that the relationship between consumers and those using their data is in some way broken.

Is it possible to reformulate the relationship between data-oriented companies and public bodies and the customers whose data they use? According to a recent collaboration between the WEF and the City of Helsinki, yes.

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