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    Industry forum on Software, Services and Systems

    Objectives

    The NESSI (Networked European Software and Services Initiative) Technology Platform is a public/private partnership that aims to develop and implement a common European strategy for achieving global leadership in software and services.
    NESSI addresses European research in services architectures and software infrastructures and will develop technologies, strategies and deployment policies fostering new, open, industrial solutions and societal applications that enhance the safety, security and well-being of citizens.
    It was officially launched o n the 7th of September 2005, in the presence of Viviane Reding, EU Commissioner for Information Society and Media .
    You can download the press coverage of the event collected by Software Technologies Unit here .
    The first NESSI open forum is taking place on the 26th of January in Brussels. You can find further details and the on-line registration form here .


    Technology Platforms are expected to play a major role in mobilizing Europe's research, technological development and innovation efforts. They bring together the key stakeholders (industry, national and European public authorities, the academic community, the financial community, consumers and users) around a common vision for the development of the technologies concerned. Their primary objectives are the definition of Strategic Research Agendas for the medium to long-term and the establishment of the necessary, effective public-private partnerships for their implementation.
     

    Strategic importance of Software, Services and Systems

    Software and services have become a strategic capability for industry and society. Advances in Web services, Software, Grid technologies and communication networks are changing the Internet, the wireless and the audiovisual worlds into a worldwide platform for building and delivering distributed applications, services and information.

    Today, this trend is emerging as a market for Web services and "on-demand services". Peer-to-peer services are becoming well-established in some domains. This will have a severe effect on existing IT business models. Rather than customers having to adapt their processes to make use of off-the-shelf software, they will be able to procure, relatively cheaply, tailored systems that directly support their work and that can evolve in step with their businesses.

    At stake here is a European market for IT services (e.g. software and system implementation, integration, consulting, training, operations and support) currently worth 135 B€ annually. The services are enabled by software which is important in its own right as a significant market. The European software market (incl. Eastern Europe) forms about a third of the global software market projected at about 74 B€ in 2005 (up from 65 B€ in 2003), with expected annual growth of 3-4% for 2002-2005.

    Software is also an important factor in other industries. Large industry in Europe is very software intensive. They spend significant amounts in software development technology needed to keep their products, business processes and production systems competitive. Competence to provide enhanced functionalities through advanced software and services is crucial to the future of industry.

    The importance of Software production goes beyond industrial and economic reasons. In highly-connected environments with pervasive computing, social, ethical and legal issues will have an ever increasing significance. The implementation of regulations and laws will be partially coded in the software. If we lose the capability to produce software, business methods, accounting standards, privacy rules and intellectual property rights will be subject to interpretation and implemented by foreign-based corporations.
     

    A joint industrial strategy

    The combination of the growing demand for software and services, and the technological and economic forces affecting the industry represent a huge opportunity for a breakthrough in the software and services sector if Europe joins forces around a common strategy. Therefore a group of 13 leading companies decided to explore the possibilities for addressing issues of common interest that will ensure a more competitive position for the European software and services industry in the future. The discussions led to the creation of a European Technology Platform on software and services, NESSI (Networked European Software and Services Initiative), and the formulation of a vision document identifying the needs for research, standards and possible policies in this area.