This page defines the governance rules, policies, self-organization, and legal hosting of the digital.auto initiative.
Antitrust Code of Conduct
This section provides the General Rules and Governance as well as Anti-competitive Conduct and Exchange of Information for the digital.auto initiative.
digital.auto is a global, open and independent initiative with a focus on exploring new use cases utilizing the so-called Software-defined Vehicle (SdV). SdV is a generic enabler of new digital vehicle services and on-board applications. digital.auto aims to support the mobility industry to leverage the full potential of this new enabling technology. This Antitrust Code of Conduct provides rules for the collaboration within digital.auto in more detail.
General Rules and Governance
The following summarizes digital.auto´s general antitrust rules and governance policies:
- digital.auto is not aimed at providing a platform for any kind of conduct resulting in restricting or distorting competition in any way.
- digital.auto participants are committed to comply with all applicable antitrust and competition laws and regulations and therefore to strictly adhere to these laws and regulations. Each digital.auto participant acknowledges that non-compliance may result in exclusion of the respective participant from the digital.auto.
- The participation in digital.auto is open to all industrial companies, academic institutions and other research institutions interested in.
- All policies and guidelines published by digital.auto are recommendations. The digital.auto participants remain free to participate in alternative initiatives or to develop products that do not comply with the digital.auto policies and guidelines.
- In the event that any activities by digital.auto could lead to an industrial standard involving intellectual property rights, the digital.auto participants shall agree on a clear and balanced IPR-Policy separately.
- digital.auto participants shall inform their employees and representatives participating in digital.auto about this Antitrust Code of Conduct. Each digital.auto participant shall assure that its representatives are duly sensitized to antitrust issues and that they understand any associated risks and therefore conduct their participation in digital.auto in compliance with antitrust and competition laws and regulations.
- A detailed agenda shall be established and circulated prior to any digital.auto meetings (in person or over the phone). Any antitrust / competition law concerns with respect to topics on the agenda, shall be addressed to digital.auto and/or the participant in charge of organizing the respective meeting. If the concerns may not be resolved prior to the meeting, the respective agenda topic shall be taken from the agenda until compliance with antitrust /competition laws is established. digital.auto participants shall hold their meetings in strict accordance with the agenda; deviations should be mirrored in the meeting minutes. Minutes reflecting the essence of the discussions shall be drawn-up for each meeting and circulated to the digital.auto participants in due course for approval.
- digital.auto participants shall immediately and openly raise their concerns if certain discussions may, in their view, entail a risk of non-compliance with antitrust and/or competition laws and regulations. Such concerns shall be reflected in the meeting minutes. If the concerns may not be resolved in the meeting, the topic shall be postponed until compliance with antitrust /competition laws is established.
- In case of doubt about compliance of any digital.auto matter with antitrust / competition laws, the digital.auto participants shall involve their respective legal department for advice and assistance.
Anti-competitive Conduct and Exchange of Information
Certain conduct is considered inherently harmful to competition, and applicable antitrust and competition laws and regulations regularly prohibit such conduct. Such conduct includes agreements or concerted practices between competitors and even the exchange of information with respect to:
- Development, market strategy and intended market entries regarding new products in the field of AIoT (unless already publicly known)
- Planned internal R&D projects in the field of AIoT
- All price related information (e.g. purchase, sales and resale prices including list prices, price components, price calculation, pricing policy, price changes)
- Capacities and quotas (e.g. production quotas, restriction on production, capacity shortages)
- Sales policy, sales territories, customers (e.g. customer lists, current orders and invitations to order or requests for quotation, customer and market sharing, market exits, boycotts)
- Terms and conditions agreed with customers/suppliers (e.g. warranty)
- Information related to personnel recruitment of experts for AIoT or other experts (e.g. salary, salary components, salary ranges, bonuses, monetary incentives or no poach agreements)
The digital.auto participants will neither encourage, nor facilitate or favor in any way such conduct or any communication of sensitive, confidential and strategic business information among digital.auto participants.
Participation and self-organization
digital.auto does not require a membership, and does not collect membership fees. Collaboration in digital.auto is done by parcipipants.
Role definition: digital.auto participant. A participant must have made at least one significant contribution (*) towards a digital.auto deliverable in the last 12 months. He/she can then run for seats and have voting rights on key decisions such as elections of the digital.auto Steering Committee, Work Group chairs, etc.
(*) Significant contribution: Can be co-authorship of a whitepaper, contribution to a digital.auto use case, participation in a digital.auto project, etc. Contribution must be publicly documented.
digital.auto aims for a pragmatic and transparent process when it comes to self-organization. Work is done in projects, which are self-funded and self-organizing. Projects are initiated, monitored and potentially decomissioned by the Steering Committee.
Steering Committee: The digital.auto Steering Committee (StC) is elected every two years. It consists of up to 6 representatives. Every active participant can apply. Elections are opened 4 weeks before the actual vote. Each applicant is given the chance to send an application letter to all active participants to introduce himself. The actual voting is done electronically and anonymous. A special election can be held to replace a Steering Committee member who resigns.
Any digital.auto participant may raise a formal objection or complaint to the digital.auto Steering Committee, e.g. regarding decisions taken by projects. The Steering Committee will attempt to reach a resolution and report back to the digital.auto participants.
Any Steering Committee member has the right to dispute a decision taken by the Steering Committee. This shall be settled by open dialogue in the Steering Committee.
In case the dispute can not be settled within the DTF, a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution ADR shall be chosen.
The digital.auto pages utilize the wiki of the digital playbook and follow the same privacy policies, which are described here.
Please note, that the content on the digital.auto pages is being provided for informational purposes only. No technical, commercial or legal advice is being given, and no contractual relationship is created by using any recommendations or proposed technologies on these sites.
While the information provided on this page is about topics around digital.auto generally, you should seek the advice of an expert before implementing any of the recommendations or technologies
digital.auto is currently hosted by Ferdinand-Steinbeis-Institut (FSTI) as a neutral, non-profit facilitator.
Address: Ferdinand-Steinbeis-Institut, Bildungscampus 9, 74076 Heilbronn, Germany