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2005-2006 Work Programme

2.5.9 Collaborative Working Environments


To develop next generation collaborative working environments, thereby increasing creativity and boosting innovation and productivity. These environments should provide collaboration services to make possible the development of worker-centric, flexible, scalable and adaptable tools and applications. This will enable seamless and natural collaboration amongst a diversity of agents (humans, machines, etc) within distributed, knowledge-rich and virtualized working environments. Professional virtual communities and nomadic personal access to knowledge should be supported.


Three layered tasks following a systems approach.

  1. Design and development of innovative concepts, methods and core services for distributed collaboration at work . Core collaboration services will enhance available platforms to provide: synchronisation and persistence of distributed workspaces; discovery and allocation of group resources; group identification, traceability and security; management and interfacing between physical materials and digital representations; and environment awareness, with a special emphasis on mobility. Next generation collaborative working environments should deliver a high quality experience to co-workers based on flexible management of services and should be customizable to different communities, making use of the bundling of different (mobile) devices.

    Instruments: IPs, CAs and STREPs.

  2. Research on tools for collaborative work in rich virtualised environments . These tools will offer sophisticated services to ensure seamless, stable, dependable and scalable applications for collaborative work. Focus is on support of augmented group presence, visualisation, group management, sharing support, seamless interaction, service composition, and semantic modelling of complex groups of workers.

    Instruments: IPs, CAs and STREPs.

  3. Development of innovative validating applications for collaborative work in content-rich, mobile and fixed collaborative environments. Applications are expected in "ICT rich" domains, such as collaborative design and engineering, in particular rapid prototyping and simulation, virtual manufacturing, media/content production, e-Training for collaborative and remote workers, e-Professionals and knowledge and information workers in remote and rural settings. These applications will benefit from cross-domain fertilisation and, where appropriate, leverage on experience from collaborative games.

    Instruments: IPs

Other tasks:

  • To promote joint research activities with national programmes, to define future research agendas or to identify emerging topics and research groups world-wide.

    Instruments: SSAs/CAs

  • Collaboration with international research and standardisation activities . Research may also build on international RTD activities, involving in particular the United States, Canada, Korea and Japan. Activities should also be linked to international standardisation initiatives, including W3C and IETF when appropriate, with the potential to achieve internationally agreed reference architecture for collaborative work.

    Instruments: SSAs/CAs.

Work should, when appropriate, strengthen and complement research carried out under ESA, EUREKA and national initiatives. In particular, links to Eureka ITEA projects related to Nomadic and Cyber-Enterprise domain applications should be described to assess synergies and inter-dependencies in terms of timing and funding.

Actions targeting SMEs developing collaborative tools and application are encouraged in order to achieve better interoperability of complementary services and tools.

It is expected that work on innovative concepts, methods, core collaboration services, and tools for collaboration would crystallize around Integrated Projects which will also validate those results on testbeds and large demonstrators. These Integrated Projects are expected to create a critical mass and to follow a system approach . The use of the Experience and Application Research (EAR 1 ) approach is encouraged for an early involvement of users and to create links to the structures, business processes and workplace practices of the organizations.

Coordination Actions are expected to promote and support the networking and coordination of research and innovation activities needed for European leadership in ICT-enabled Collaborative Working Environments.

Specific Targeted Research Projects are encouraged to explore emerging alternatives to pave the way for additional technological advances in the field.

see above
Indicative budget:
IPs: 70%; STREPS, CAs/SSAs: 30%.
Call information:
IST Call 5.

1 See the ISTAG working group report "Involving users in the development of Ambient Intelligence" on /ist/istag.htm

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