Digital platforms have transformed the way we consume. Technological progress has allowed platforms to disrupt markets in profound ways and create new industries online. Their ability to connect interest groups, mobilize capital, and create new workforces, have resulted in their exponential growth of entire platform ecosystems. These ecosystems can host several actors and firms: all collaborating and competing, not just for profit - but for your time, attention, and data.

Digital platform ecosystems have become increasingly intertwined into our digitalized, economized lives. But just how integral are these digital platform ecosystems - and how can regulators adapt to ensure that these actors are more beneficial to than exploitative of society? This has been a difficult process for competition authorities around the world. The interconnected nature of digital platform ecosystems means that regulators can no longer rely on the framework used for vertically integrated suppliers or even brick and mortar transnational corporations. To tackle the problems of a platform ecosystem, we thus seek solutions from the origins of the taxonomy itself - nature’s own ecosystems.

Here at ASA, we combine our resources from ecology, analytics, and economics to create novel solutions in antitrust laws for digital platform ecosystems. Our interdisciplinary expertise allows us the capacity to initiate new policy ideas for digital platform ecosystems using concepts analogous to natural ecosystems including metabolism, panarchy, and niche creation. Our contribution aims to advance a transformation into the way we perceive these platforms and thus eliminate any regulatory blindspots.

In collaboration with the BRICS Competition Law and Policy Center, our objectives are:

  1. To produce novel concepts in 5 crucial areas of regulation for digital platform ecosystems which facilitate policies customized to a generation of highly interconnected, decentralized organizational structure.
  2. To harness our advanced analytical tools and modelling to develop quantitative methods by which we can study digital platform ecosystems including the use and tracking of their resources, data collection, and economic value.
  3. To collaborate with a team of specialists in antitrust law, competition policy, and ecology to provide efficient policy tools and recommendations using quantitative and descriptive analogies from natural ecosystems.

DigFaSt is a purposeful project with an ambition to facilitate the precise changes regulatory authorities require to ensure sustainable practices of digital platform ecosystems. Our team of researchers from various disciplines strive toward attaining unique solutions in transforming the governance of digital platforms using advanced analytical tools, mathematical know-how, and the insightful experiences in antitrust laws. Our contributions thus go beyond the constraints of information and time and instead provide long-term, transformative adaptation of regulations for digital platforms.