Since the signing of the Big Data Value contractual Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in October 2014, more than 50 projects and numerous BDVA members have explored how data can drive innovation across the data stack and how industries can transform business practices. They are working at the confluence of new sources of data (e.g. IoT, DNA, HD pictures, satellite data) and new or revisited processing paradigms (e.g. Edge computing, blockchain, machine learning) to tackle new use cases and to provide disruptive solution for known problems (Zillner et al. 2017). The dimensions of big data value are multiple: they embrace data; skills; legal and policy issues; technology leadership through research and innovation; transforming applications into new business opportunities; the acceleration of business ecosystems and business models, with a particular focus on SMEs; and successful solutions for the major societal challenges Europe is facing in areas such as health, energy, transport and the environment (Cavanillas et al. 2016).
With an initial indicative budget from the European Union of €534 million for the period 2016–2020 and €201 million allocated in total by the end of 2018, the BDV PPP has already mobilised €1570 million of private investments since the launch of the PPP (€467.47 million for 2018). Forty-two projects were running at the beginning of 2019 and the BDV PPP in only 2 years developed 132 innovations of exploitable value (106 delivered in 2018, 35% of which are significant innovations) including technologies, platforms, services, products, methods, systems, components and/or modules, frameworks/architectures, processes, tools/toolkits, spin-offs, datasets, ontologies, patents and knowledge. Ninety-three per cent of the innovations delivered in 2018 had an economic impact, and 48% had a societal impact. In 2018 alone, the BDV PPP organised 323 events (including own events, seminars and conferences) outreaching over 630,000 participants; and taking into account mass media, the Monitoring Report 2018 (Big Data Value PPP Monitoring Report 2018 2019) estimated the number of people outreached and engaged in dissemination activities as 7.8 million.
But how to make these numbers tangible? How to explain what the BDV PPP actors achieved? To answer these questions, in Spring 2019 the BDVA and the BDVe project launched the Best Success Story Award to identify and give visibility to success stories based on impact, developed in a way that can be easily explained to a broad audience. The first edition of the award enabled the five finalists to present their stories on stage at the BDV PPP Summit 2019 in Riga (Fig. 1).
The first edition, won by the TransformingTransport project with DataBio/Wuudis as runner-up, had the chance to have Mrs. Dace Melbārde, Member of the European Parliament and former Minister for Culture for the Republic of Latvia, award the prize to Rodrigo Castiñeira González, the project coordinator. The 2020 edition introduced a new category – SMEs and start-ups – and the awards ceremony took place during EBDVF 2020 with the Data Pitch project and the start-up Orbem as winners in their respective categories, while Ubiwhere was distinguished for the quality of its promotional video (Table 1).
In this chapter, we decided to present a set of success stories representative of the BDV PPP activities amongst the 2019 and 2020 participants. Each section shows the collateral provided by the contenders, a summary of the story and contact details to enable the reader to investigate further.