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What is the difference between a data space and a data ecosystem?

A data space and a data ecosystem are both terms used to describe a collection of data-related resources and entities, but they have different meanings. There are still a lot of different definitions flourishing around so the following description should only be seen as an approach:

Data space typically refers to a more bounded and controlled environment in which or through which data is managed and shared by a specific group of stakeholders. It can be a physical or virtual space where data is collected, stored or accessed and processed, and where stakeholders can access and share data within agreed rules and policies. Data spaces are for example today already commonly used in industries such as healthcare or finance, where there are strict regulations and privacy requirements for data sharing.

A data ecosystem, on the other hand, refers to a larger, more open and interconnected environment where data is created, shared and used by multiple stakeholders across a variety of domains and sectors. It can include different types of data sources, such as open data, protected data, and user-generated data. A data ecosystem is typically characterized by its diversity, complexity, and dynamism, and it may involve a variety of actors, including individuals, organizations, and governments.

In summary, both data spaces and data ecosystems encompass data-related resources and entities, with the former typically being more limited and controlled, while the latter are larger, more open, and more interconnected.


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