Substantial research and evidence suggest that best-practice regulation does matter and both the design and the effective enforcement of regulatory frameworks are essential for digital markets to thrive. The digital transformation brings about challenges to regulators and grounding regulatory decisions in robust, multifaceted and thoughtfully interpreted evidence can prove instrumental in generating positive market dynamics in the short and long term. From informing consumer choices to inducing market efficiency to improving return on investment, evidence-based decision-making can serve a myriad of regulatory goals and amplify the regulators’ capacity to lead markets.
- Connectivity mapping: Tracking the deployment of the various kinds of digital infrastructure can inform the regulatory process and allow regulators to identify market gaps and market stakeholders – to turn them into opportunities for investment and growth.
- Metrics for market performance: Metrics allow regulators to assess the performance of market segments for digital services against social and economic goals and identify priority action areas for policy and regulation.
- Measuring regulatory maturity and levels of collaborative regulation: Regulatory benchmarks pinpoint the status of advancement of policy and regulatory frameworks for digital markets. They help track progress and identify trends and gaps in regulatory frameworks, making the case for further regulatory reform towards achieving vibrant and inclusive digital industries.
- Impact assessment: A combination of quantitative and qualitative econometric studies based on reliable data can enable regulators to explore, understand and quantify how digital technologies, market players or regulation can contribute economically to growing the larger digital ecosystem and making it more inclusive.
- Regulatory roadmaps based on established authoritative metrics can guide regulators towards achieving digital connectivity objectives in a faster and targeted way. In order to leverage on these evidence-based instruments, the volume and quality of data accessible to regulators need to be increased, and their sources diversified. These instruments can also enable market players to reflect on their performance and impact on the economy and development, and engage in self-regulation.