Supporting the Observatory on the Online Platform Economy

Mobile-digital communication concept, illustration by  j-mel/Adobe Stock

J-mel/Adobe Stock


Online platforms are online spaces that bring together users to facilitate interactions such as the exchange of information or commercial transactions. These platforms, including e-commerce marketplaces, app stores, search engines, and social media platforms, are transforming different sectors of the economy, such as e-commerce and retail, travel, leisure and hospitality. With more than one million EU businesses using online platforms to sell their goods and services, monitoring and analysing current trends and emerging issues in the online platform environment is an important task.

The Observatory on the Online Platform Economy, which comprises a group of 15 independent experts and a dedicated team of European Commission officials, monitors the evolution of the online platform economy to advise and support the Commission in its policy making in relation to online platforms. The Observatory also looks into current and emerging challenges and opportunities for the EU in the online economy and in online general search.


The primary focus of this study, in support of the Observatory on the Online Platform Economy, is to research various aspects of the relationships between platforms and their business users. These include terms and conditions, ranking of search engine results by algorithms, pricing, and access to data by platforms. At the core of these research activities is gathering robust evidence from key stakeholders in relation to the evolution of the online platform economy and key emerging issues.

Support our study

Are you a representative of an online platform or a business user? Visit to find out how you can contribute to this study and help support informed policy making in the EU.