Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Telematics engineering under the Fourth Framework Programme

Telematics engineering is one of a number of horizontal RTD activities in the new Telematics Applications specific programme under the Fourth Framework Programme for research and technological development and demonstration (1994-1998). The specific programme was launched on th...
Telematics engineering is one of a number of horizontal RTD activities in the new Telematics Applications specific programme under the Fourth Framework Programme for research and technological development and demonstration (1994-1998). The specific programme was launched on the 23 November 1994.

Horizontal activities include those RTD actions which support or draw upon activities in vertical application sectors - both within the telematics applications programme itself (telematics for healthcare or libraries for example) and more widely with other specific programmes of the Fourth Framework Programme, e.g. information technologies and advanced communications technologies and services.

The studies and research under telematics engineering have three ends in view. First, work will involve devising tools and methods to enable researchers and engineers to develop telematics applications as efficiently as possible through the optimal integration of generic equipment, networks and services with specific equipment or software (applications engineering). The next task will be to identify and analyse changes to be made to the user environment so that a new telematics application can be successfully introduced (process engineering). Finally, cross-sectoral issues, such as data protection or intellectual property rights, will be tackled. These activities will be carried out in close collaboration with the specific programmes on information technologies and advanced communications technologies and services.

Telematics engineering will provide a focus for the collection, collation and adaptation of existing methods, models, tools and techniques in three main areas:

- Process re-engineering where research and studies will be undertaken to evaluate the impact on work processes in organizations pertaining to the programme sectors and on user acceptance of telematics applications;
- Requirements specification engineering or the conversion of user requirements into comprehensive telematics applications' technical specifications;
- Application engineering, i.e. the actual implementation and validation of the specified telematics project by integrating generic building blocks to develop and demonstrate a working telematics service or application.

Two related issues are entitled respectively "Legal, ethical and socio-economic issues in telematics applications" and "Diffusion and feedback of telematics engineering results". The former deals with the potential impact on society of the widespread diffusion of telematics applications and the latter with the establishment of the channels of communication through which the results of telematics engineering and all the application areas are exchanged.

A number of preparatory actions, selected following a call (OJ No C 78 of 15.3.1994) for accompanying measures in the field of telematics systems of general interest under the Third Framework Programme and in the form of specific projects of short duration, are already under way. These concern:

- TE 1003: MATISSE - Investigation of new managerial approaches to telematics systems and services delivery and quality evaluation;
- TE 1004: STARTEL and TE 1002: T-BOOK - Surveying models, tools and techniques in application engineering, with the former focused on object-oriented technologies and the latter providing a complementary view on alternative technologies;
- TE 1005: MANDATE - Best practice from past experience of telematics projects from the Third Framework Programme is surveyed and codes or principles for the future determined in respect of programme management support and the optimum performance of successful workshop organization, information base structure, concentration mechanisms and enhanced project life-cycle, road map and control model generation;
- TE 1006: PEPITA - Process re-engineering, state-of-the-art survey and assessment of future trends in the sectors covered by the telematics application programme. In addition, the role and requirements of telematics actors in respect of this new discipline will be assessed.

Project outputs and reports will be made available both electronically (CD-ROM, hypertext PC tool kits, World Wide Web and CORDIS) and in paper format. The dissemination of additional results will also take place in the form of seminars, tutorials and workshops. Complete project descriptions including information on participants will be available in the CORDIS RTD-Projects database shortly.

At the recent telematics applications information days held in Brussels on 16-17 January 1995, over 400 expressions of interest in the telematics engineering sector were registered. Information on these expressions of interest is available on the CORDIS RTD-EOI service.

The next call for proposals for the telematics applications programme will be published on 15 March 1995. An information day will take place on 5 April 1995 in Luxembourg. Registration for this event will begin immediately after the call date.

A first telematics engineering conference will be organized shortly afterwards to disseminate widely the results of projects to potential participants in the telematics applications programme under the Fourth Framework Programme.

Source: European Commission, DG XIII

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