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Public Policy

CenturyLink Discusses Digital Transformation with Global Policymakers

Author: Ted Price, Assistant General Counsel, International Government Affairs

CenturyLink recently joined global policymakers and industry representatives to discuss the kinds of  public policies that encourage organizations to embrace today’s digital transformation at a conference co-hosted by the United States Council for International Business, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Business at OECD

The conference focused on the OECD’s Going Digital Project, which was launched in 2017 to help policymakers address the challenges of the digital transformation taking place around the world.  The first phase of the project resulted in an OECD white paper entitled “Going Digital: Shaping Policies, Improving Lives,” as well as an online Digital Toolkit, both released in March 2019.

Digital transformation is centered on emerging technology services, such as the Internet of Things (IoT), big data, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. It offers increased innovation, productivity and growth, but also presents some challenges on issues related to privacy and security.

The OECD’s recently released white paper focuses on several areas that CenturyLink believes are key, including:

  • Unleashing Innovation.  Regulation cannot keep pace with technological innovation, particularly for emerging technologies that are in the early stages of development.  CenturyLink agrees that governments that modernize existing regulations for the digital age, refrain from adopting overly prescriptive regulations and engage in multi-stakeholder governance models will enhance economic development, innovation, investment and jobs.


  • Strengthening Trust.  Consumer confidence in privacy and security is essential to the global adoption and growth of the internet and the use of emerging technologies like IoT and AI.  Privacy laws should be modernized to address the digital transformation that is already taking place in the global economy.  We believe strengthening cybersecurity in this environment requires governments and enterprises to implement best practices and incident responses such as those found in the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Cybersecurity Framework and the International Anti-Botnet Guide developed by the Council to Secure the Digital Economy.


  • Fostering Market Openness.  Quoting the white paper, “Market openness enables digitalisation to flourish by creating a business-friendly environment that allows foreign and domestic firms to compete on an equal footing and without excessive restrictions or burdensome conditions.”  CenturyLink strongly supports new agreements that open markets around the world to the provision of communications and information technology goods and services without restrictions on foreign investment.

According to a study commissioned by CenturyLink entitled “Enterprise Digital Transformation Strategies Turning Disruption into Differentiation,” 30 percent of customers surveyed did not have a digital transformation strategy, 92 percent want third party help with their digital transformation and 40 percent consider improved cybersecurity, data privacy and system reliability as key drivers of desired digital transformation outcomes.  

As the second largest provider of enterprise services in North America and one of the largest providers of internet backbone services in the world, with operations in over 60 countries, CenturyLink is well positioned to help our customers manage increasing network and IT complexity while providing a robust set of managed cybersecurity solutions to support customers’ digital transformation journey.  

We look forward to continuing to work with policymakers around the globe on these important issues that have the potential to strengthen our global economy.

For more information about CenturyLink Public Policy’s department and policy issues that are important to the company, please visit CenturyLink Public Policy’s homepage and follow us on our policy Twitter handle.