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Multi-technology positioning professionals

Final Report Summary - MULTI-POS (Multi-technology positioning professionals)

MULTI-POS bridged the gap between Location-Based Services and physical layer positioning technologies

The wireless positioning research world has so far been split into two large distinct research communities: the technical community and the business community. It is now widely acknowledged that seamless outdoor-indoor location can be achieved only through hybridization of several technologies and systems and therefore the local research and training programmes dedicated to positioning in various universities worldwide are starting to include also the hybrid location technologies in their curricula. So far, all the existing formal training in EU has been focused on only one of these two layers, but it does not address both in an integrated way. This shows a missing link between these two communities and expert workforce with good background in all the layers involved in a wireless positioning system are in demand. MULTI-POS (Multi-technology Positioning Professionals) is a Marie Curie Initial Training Network funded by the 7th Framework Programme of the European Union 2012-2016. One of the MULTI-POS objectives was to build such a link that would create a lot of new possibilities for flexible Location-Based Services (LBS) and positioning-based applications, and a new approach to wireless location research expertise and training.

The research in MULTI-POS network was carried out by 15 research fellows recruited at the network partners. Twelve of the fellows were Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) pursuing their PhD degree as part of the training, and three fellows were (somewhat more) Experienced Researches (ERs) employed in the network for carrying out post-doc research. The fellows were trained to the multi-technology positioning, applications and services on-site and in network-wide training events organized jointly. A major role was played also by cross-border and cross-sector secondments, researcher exchange between the academia and industry.

The ten partners of MULTI-POS include six universities and three companies (including an SME). In addition, there were ten associate partners, of which six are companies (five SMEs), three research institutes, and a university. The network was coordinated by Tampere University of Technology, Finland. The other full partners were from Czech Republic, France, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, and The United Kingdom.

There were three research themes in MULTI-POS, each grouping together five individual research topics for the recruited fellows. We will present the themes briefly in the following sections.

A. Location-based Applications and Business Models
The objectives of the theme were to investigate novel business models for companies involved in wireless localization, to create and investigate novel Location Based Services with special focus on enhanced social well-being and crisis management, and to create the cognitive bridge between the application layer and physical layer. The individual research topics in the theme include:
• Location techniques, ecosystem and business model for 2020 urban mobility
• Deriving knowledge and social benefits from mass mobile network user data
• Developing markets for Location Based Services LBS
• Location integration in crisis management lifecycle
• Advanced assistance services of high performance in harsh environments

B. Cognitive Long-term Location Approaches
The objectives of the theme were to develop advanced technologies and algorithms for flexible, context-aware and dynamically adaptive positioning, and to feed into the location-based applications and business models theme the cognitive information needed to fill the gap between the application and physical layers. The individual research topics in the theme include:
• Cognitive prototyping platform
• Cognitive methods for positioning and communications
• Innovative interference mitigation techniques for dynamically changing environments
• Context-aware semantic processing
• Adaptive flexible sensor integration for indoor location

C. Hybrid Positioning Technologies
The objectives of the theme were to offer novel hybridization solutions that take into account also the trustworthiness of the offered solutions, and to define the technology gaps that can be filled by the cognitive positioning long-term approaches and to feed them into the location-based applications and business models. The individual research topics in the theme include:
• Large scale data analytics systems for GNSS data
• Signals of Opportunity
• Signals for combined positioning and communication systems
• GNSS integrity monitoring in urban environment
• Multi-GNSS positioning

Our integrated research and training programme consisted of several dimensions including a personal career development plan, local and partner-specific training, complementary training through secondments, joint training through MULTI-POS network events, training through research, training through team work, and training through interaction with research community, standardization community and general public. Training, research and innovation are inter-linked within our programme. The following research fields and disciplines were involved in our training program: aerospace, business administration, business planning, modelling and forecasting, crisis management, computer and information systems, data management, economics, estimation theory, geo-informatics, information delivery, logistics, machine learning, mathematics, navigation, positioning, signal processing, statistics, strategic analysis, telecommunications. Moreover, MULTI-POS was also offering training in soft skills such as scientific paper writing, communication/public presentations, negotiation skills, management of academic and industrial projects, research ethics, IPR knowledge, innovation and technology transfer, and entrepreneurial skills. Furthermore, skills like adaptability, the capacity to deal with complex problems and the experience of working in international environments, have been developed through our secondment plan. On-site partner-specific training was offered both to the hosted and seconded fellows.

Towards the end of the project, the fellows and their supervisors contributed to the Springe book "Multi-Technology Positioning" published soon after the project end in early 2017. More information on the project, its partners and research contents is available at the project web site at www.multi-pos.eu. You can also contact the coordinator, Prof. Jari Nurmi at his email jari.nurmi@tut.fi