Waterford News

EU meets US in a Next Generation Internet Programme led by TSSG

TSSG Jim ClarkeTelecommunications Systems Software Group (TSSG) at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) has been awarded funding of €3.5 million under Horizon 2020 for a Research and Innovation Action project entitled “A Collaborative platform for Bridging EU-US Next Generation Internet (NGI) Experiments (NGIAtlantic.eu)”.

Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU research and innovation programme with almost €80bn of funding made available over seven years (2014 to 2020). The objectives of the H2020 programme is to: stimulate excellent science, build industrial leadership, and provide solutions to the challenges that our society faces.

This 3 year project has 3 European partners, TSSG/WIT (Coordinator - Ireland), Trust-IT (Italy) EURESCOM (Germany), and 2 American partners, Rutgers University and the University of Utah.

Over its lifetime, NGIAtlantic.eu will launch 5 open calls for proposals, with a total of €2.8 million available for European organisations, with US-based counterpart organisations being funded by US funding agencies, willing to carry out high-quality research & innovation activities on NGI experimental platforms. The purpose is to develop collaborations between EU and US research teams around the technical challenges posed by the vision of developing a more human-centric Next Generation Internet.

The NGI initiative, launched by the European Commission in the autumn of 2016, aims to do things very differently from the research and development activities of past programmes. The NGI initiative aims to shape the future internet as an interoperable platform ecosystem that embodies the values that Europe holds dear, including openness, inclusivity, transparency, accountability, privacy, cooperation, protection of data and information, and freedom. Since its launch, the NGI initiative has been developed to drive this technological revolution by attracting smaller scale project teams, with an expressed emphasis on high impact innovators, to bid for regular open calls on a number of relevant NGI topics.  These topics are spanning the domains of privacy and trust enhancing technologies, decentralised data governance, new forms of search and discovery, interactive technologies, and many more, while contributing to making the future internet more value-centric, human and inclusive for all citizens.

The project is led by James Clarke at TSSG who has dedicated over six years to building this research area of NGI as a project coordinator within the Future Internet Research Experimentation (FIRE) initiative and he was directly involved in the initial setting up and building of the EU’s NGI Initiative as coordinator of the SpeakNGI.eu project, one of the three “pathfinder” projects helping to define and build the NGI initiative with the European Commission. In addition, Clarke has a proven track record of coordinating international cooperation projects at TSSG for over a decade, including dedicated projects with the USA, making the awarding of NGIAtlantic.eu a natural fit for this multi-million-euro project.

Commenting on the funding success, Clarke said “the consortium of partners from both EU and US has been selected carefully to bring the necessary competences together all the crucial areas required ranging from technical knowledge, direct experience in EU - US collaborations, to NGI policy understanding. This project is the culmination of years of effort and I am looking forward to seeing the results taking place over the next three years and beyond the lifetime of the NGIAtlantic.eu project”.

Stephen O’Reilly, the ICT H2020 National Contact Point for Ireland at Enterprise Ireland noted that “this is considered a landmark project since it represents the largest budget share to a single participant coming into the Republic of Ireland in ICT under Horizon 2020. This accomplishment is reflective of the success of Irish researchers in the area of ICT and contributes to underpinning the competitiveness of Ireland’s research eco-system. Researchers across the Institutes of Technology and the Universities and companies should be looking at the remaining opportunities under Horizon 2020 and preparing for Horizon Europe”

“TSSG and WIT have had great success in the Horizon 2020 programme across a number of domains and this is a significant boost to Jim and the team as we edge closer to the beginning of the Horizon Europe programme in 2021” explains Kevin Doolin, Director of Innovation at TSSG.

Additional information on the NGIatlantic.eu project can be found here.


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