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Information & Communication Technologies



FP7: FET Proactive Intiative: Bio-ICT CONVERGENCE



Objective ICT-2007.8.3: Fet proactive 3: Bio- ICT convergence (Extract from Work programme text)

Target outcome:

New perspectives in ICT that exploit the understanding of information processing in biological systems have demonstrable advantages in terms of functionality, operating conditions, resilience or adaptability or lead to systems that can be naturally combined with biological systems. Projects will integrate some of the following topics:

  • Novel computing paradigms , derived from the information representation and processing capabilities of biological systems (networks of neurons or other cells), or from the computational interpretation of biological processes (molecular signalling, metabolism) and with measurable advantages over current approaches to difficult problems in information processing.
  • Biomimetic artefacts : ad hoc hardware implementations of bio-inspired systems in areas where standard devices do not provide the required performance. This may use analogue and digital circuits, evolvable hardware, artificial cells, neuro-morphic chips or sensors for achieving life-like functionality or properties such as self organisation, robustness or growth.
  • Bidirectional interfaces between electronic or electro-mechanical systems and living entities, at or close to the cellular level, with adequate control and/or signal processing algorithms, enabling direct interfacing to the nervous system or to other types of cells.
  • Biohybrid artefacts , involving tightly coupled ICT and biological entities (e.g. neural or other types of biological tissue) for new forms of computation, sensing, communication or physical actuation or adaptation.

Coordination actions (CAs) should support the consolidation of research communities, their visibility, the coordination of research agendas and, where appropriate, the coordination of national or regional research programmes or activities. The initiative also encourages international cooperation in foundational research on its topics described above.

Expected impact:

This multi-disciplinary research should foster joint progress and synergy in ICT and the bio-and neuro-sciences. Novel computing paradigms should lead to a fundamental rethinking of notions of information and computation that may be better suited for certain classes of problems and that can be implemented in biological, biomimetic or biohybrid devices. Such devices will need to satisfy requirements of, e.g. performance, resilience or energy consumption that are currently difficult to meet. Research on bio-interfaces and bio-hybrid devices should enable new bio-compatible ICT uses that rely on direct interactions between the technological and the living, such as for robust brain-machine interfacing or for powerful sensory-motor capabilities.

Other Call info: Background documents , Funding Scheme & Indicative budget distribution , Timetable


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Background documents
Funding schemes

CP, CSA (CA only)

Indicative budget distribution

17 M€:

  • CP 16 M€ of which a minimum of 9 M€ to IP and a minimum of 3 M€ to STREP ,
  • CSA 1 M€ (CA only)
  • Call launched: 22 Dec 2006
  • Deadline for submission of proposals: 8 May 2007
  • Start of projects: Dec 2007-Jan-Febr 2008