Global Data Leaders Collaborate to Help Create a People-Centred Data Economy

New initiative explores ways to help make data innovation work better for people and society

Datum Future today announced its Customer Journey Sandbox, a cross-industry testbed and initiative which aims to empower people to access new services built on responsible data sharing. As part of the Sandbox, Datum Future is sharing its first customer insights and will be hosting an industry engagement session to explore “Customer-centric Data Innovation” in January 2022.

Datum Future is a forum and a ‘do-tank’ of global data leaders collaborating to innovate, inform and advance a vibrant Data Economy that works for all. By gathering industry stakeholders and seeking consumer insight into the opportunities and challenges facing data-driven services, Datum Future aims to explore and develop best practice around customer engagement and data solutions that address people’s needs.

The Sandbox is Datum Future’s inaugural initiative, developed in partnership with Datum Future founding members BNP Paribas, Experian, Meta and Publicis Groupe. It is exploring what steps need to be taken to innovate better customer journeys that help people address their needs and improve their lives to benefit from responsible data sharing.

The evidence is clear that being in control of one’s own data is a pre-requisite to people feeling confident in sharing information about themselves. This is supported by research conducted by GWI in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and the US, which showed that:


  • When there are clear personal benefits and certain conditions are met, 90% of digital users would be open to sharing data with companies in order to address their needs.
  • Those on low incomes with young families seeking to access rates and payment terms fitting their circumstances were over 20% higher than average to say that they were “very likely” to share data in order to demonstrate rightful access.Qualitative research into UK young families living in poverty identified relevance, control and proportionality as well as clear benefits as essential to building consumer confidence when it comes to sharing data.


The Sandbox use case aims to understand how people living in poverty can receive fairer and more equitable access to utilities and telecoms essential services when they can share their data in the knowledge that they have control over how it is used and that there is a tangible benefit for them.

More broadly, the Sandbox explores a new model that facilitates cross-sector companies to collaborate in order to innovate new customer-centric services, processes and value propositions that drive trust, broader access and value in data sharing.  One topic to advance in this space is data portability – the principle that people should be able to take the data they share with one service and move it to another which can help to promote competition online and encourage the emergence of new services.

For those living in poverty with young families, a particularly pronounced concern over sharing data is the worry that they will be seen and treated differently because of their financial vulnerability. Tellingly, those on low incomes with young families are 30% more reluctant than the average person to share their financial data. The fear of being stigmatised because of their financial status, alongside limited time, knowledge and money worries can lead to a lack of confidence when it comes to sharing their data. The Sandbox is exploring how when people have the confidence that they are in control of their data and are assured that it will not be used to their detriment, this can lead to a greater level of trust. Transparent communication around how their data will be used and the safeguards protecting it can further contribute to building this trust and open up the clear opportunity for vulnerable people to be better served by providers.

Rimma Perelmuter, Executive Director at Datum Future, says that: “Europe’s Data Economy is now worth more than €325 billion, but represents just 2.6% of the EU27’s gross domestic product.

“For the Data Economy to flourish there needs to be a fundamental rethink, with businesses taking the lead in building consumer confidence by offering control, transparency and clear benefits.” she added. “Through our Customer Journey Sandbox, we want to help cross-sector data leaders collaborate to develop products and services that help people address their needs whilst benefitting society and their business. We call on all forward-thinking companies to join us and partner on creating new business models that are sustainable, commercially valuable and designed with the customer and social impact in mind. It will be these leaders who will benefit from the trust and understanding generated from these new relationships.”

As part of the Sandbox, Datum Future is holding interviews and consultations with key consumer groups, leading experts and cross-industry data leaders to understand the landscape, ensure relevance and identify the best opportunities to increase confidence and transparency with the people who most stand to benefit from data-driven services. The goal is to inform product innovation, policy development and business practices around people-centric data solutions.

The “Customer-Centric Data Innovation” industry engagement session taking place on 20th January 2022 will explore practical ways for businesses to develop new services that benefit people. Business transformation and data innovation leaders are invited to register their interest at ,

The Sandbox findings and actionable insights will be published in a Final Report in early 2022 – all who are interested in accessing further information and collaborating are invited to sign up here.

Carl Packham, Head of Corporate Engagement at Fair By Design said: “We welcome the plans from Datum Future and its Members to start redesigning markets, products and services to put people, inclusivity and accessibility at their heart. It’s imperative that other large data driven businesses, in essential utilities and finance sectors, get behind this initiative and start working directly with consumers to co-design fairer, more beneficial services for all parts of society.”

Ben Silcox, Chief Product Officer at Publicis Groupe, said: “We’re pleased to be a Founding Member of Datum Future and the Customer Journey Sandbox. For too long, underserved communities have suffered the unintended consequences of exclusion and unfair pricing for services that disadvantaged them.

“As a business, we are committed to creating new services and solutions designed to lift all people economically and socially. Datum Future’s Sandbox creates a unique opportunity to explore how data can work to improve people’s lives and develop solutions for future data markets, through market understanding and best practices.”

Jon Roughley, Global Head of Data Exchange at Experian said: “The Datum Future Customer Journey Sandbox provides an important opportunity for businesses to tackle ‘the poverty premium’ and collaborate with leading cross-sector, civil society and regulators to drive access and affordability for underserved communities.  We look forward to working with data innovators and leading experts to solve this fundamental need for individuals and society.”

Adam Bargroff, Privacy and Public Policy Manager at Meta and TTC Labs said: “We welcome the Datum Future Customer Sandbox as an opportunity to listen and learn, and through co-creation to improve people’s experiences around personal data.”

For further information about Datum Future and the Customer Journey Sandbox visit


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Lisa Baker is the Editor of International Business News. As the Owner of Need to See IT Publishing, Lisa is an experienced business and technology journalist and publisher.