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Dialogues on ICT to Support COoperation Ventures and Europe-North AmeRica (Canada and USA) sYnergies

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - DISCOVERY (Dialogues on ICT to Support COoperation Ventures and Europe-North AmeRica (Canada and USA) sYnergies)

Reporting period: 2017-01-01 to 2017-12-31

The overall objective of the DISCOVERY project is to support dialogues between Europe and North America (both the US and Canada) and foster cooperation in collaborative ICT Research and Innovation under Horizon 2020 and US and Canadian funding programmes. The project also aims to stimulate innovation partnerships among industry, research and academia by reinforcing helpful networking and by providing a partner search tool.

Alongside the organisation of the ICT Discovery Labs and capacity-building Workshops throughout the two-year implementation of DISCOVERY, the project’s vision has been to promote transatlantic collaboration in strategic areas for research and innovation in ICT: Cybersecurity, IoT and smart cities, eHealth and Artificial Intelligence and inclusive design. Furthermore, through the successful implementation of the cornerstone of the DISCOVERY project - the Transatlantic ICT Forum - a critical foundation of the project’s over-arching goals has been constructed and will be sustained well beyond the life of the grant.
The Transatlantic ICT Forum (TIF) has been firmly established as a well-regarded platform to benefit policy debate and provide expert opinions and recommendations related to transatlantic dialogues for ICT R&I cooperation between Europe and North America. Under the umbrella of the TIF, three working groups on key thematic areas in ICT - policy and regulations, funding mechanisms and cybersecurity - bring the Forum high-level expertise and insights on subject matters. Currently, 60 professionals with highly-relevant credentials in the project’s subject matter are members of the Forum. Through workshops and engagement activities with the Working Group’s core members, DISCOVERY has expanded its expertise base and brought to fruition the objectives of the project. Feedback and opinions from members of the Working Groups have been incorporated into the Input Papers on important issues arising from and relevant to ICT policy.
The Transatlantic ICT Forum 2017 (TIF 2017) held on 30th November 2017 in the European Parliament in Brussels, co-located with the 9th European Innovation Summit was the culmination event of two years dedicated and ambitious work by the project’s consortium partners. The Forum’s significant successes were laid on the foundation built not only by our TIF 2016 but also by the multiple events, labs, workshops, roundtables, papers and professional connections that resulted from the activities of the project.
TIF 2017 outcomes served as catalysts to support the actions undertaken by the project team to implement the Action Plan and thus to achieve the DISCOVERY impacts in areas that are essential for sustainable transatlantic collaboration, like Cybersecurity, eHealth, AI and social inclusion. Furthermore, the dedicated session on Funding Mechanisms at TIF 2017 attracted representatives from Funding Agencies on both sides of the Atlantic to explore and delve deeper into opportunities and better coordination of funding mechanisms for EU-North America collaboration in ICT R&I. Thus, TIF 2017 put the basis to continue the dialogue among Funding Agencies from Europe, the US and Canada.

The next edition of the TIF will take place in October 2018 Toronto, in a partnership with OCAD's DEEP 2018. TIF 2019 event is planned to be co-located with HPE events in Europe, e.g. with Cloud28+ or the DataCloud Annual Congress.
Together with the TIF, other significant outputs of DISCOVERY comprise a partner search tool, and a set of papers, publications and guidelines for innovation partnerships that form the Transatlantic Cooperation Toolkit to facilitate transatlantic cooperation in ICT R&I.
Furthermore, DISCOVERY provides input to future roadmaps for ICT collaboration. DISCOVERY has implemented an action plan to stimulate transatlantic collaboration in four key areas for ICT R&I: Cybersecurity, IoT and smart cities, eHealth and inclusive design. These highly relevant topics represent key areas for sustainable transatlantic collaboration and dialogue in ICT R&I and therefore they could contribute to the definition and implementation of multiannual roadmaps for future cooperation between Europe and North America.
The sustainability plan for the project results has established the basis to ensure the use of the project results beyond the partnership.
During the two years of the project, DISCOVERY has established privileged relationships with relevant organizations and key stakeholders across Europe, the US and Canada, which represent invaluable assets to support transatlantic dialogues and to achieve the expected impacts of the project. In order to leverage the assets created by the project and to secure a wide impact of DISCOVERY, we have focused on the achievement of six selected impacts, connected to the Transatlantic ICT Forum and collaboration in areas that are essential for sustainable transatlantic collaboration, like Cybersecurity, eHealth, AI and inclusive design, IoT and smart cities:

Impact 1: Make the Transatlantic ICT Forum sustainable
Impact 2: Continue DISCOVERY dialogue with the hosts of the Transatlantic Digital Economy
Impact 3: Trilateral partnerships in ICT testbeds to enable sustained experimental collaborative research in IoT and smart cities
Impact 4: Improve access to funding and strategic partnerships in eHealth
Impact 5: Leverage new collaborative relationships in Cybersecurity and to identify potential Twinning opportunities to build a stronger and more effective international cooperation across EU/US/Canada.
Impact 6: Lay the groundwork for a joint funding program in inclusive design

The Transatlantic ICT Forum - TIF is a major achievement that served to promote and realize the multi-term phases of the DISCOVERY vision. TIF 2017 cemented this activity as a unique platform to benefit policy debate and provide expert opinions and recommendations to transatlantic dialogues for ICT R&I cooperation; opened the Forum to new members from the EU, the US and Canada; and created the basis for substantive and results-oriented annual events.
Moreover, DISCOVERY is having a significant impact to leverage new research and business opportunities in key areas for transatlantic collaboration in ICT research and innovation. New collaborative relationships and ‘twinning’ opportunities in Cybersecurity across the Atlantic has been established or are emerging. For example, the Smart Grid and Cyber Physical Systems Program Office with NIST, twinning with UCC expert involved in ANASTACIA project; and identified potential for ECSO (EU) to work with NIST (US).
Moreover, trilateral partnerships in ICT testbeds to enable sustained experimental collaborative research in IoT and smart cities are ongoing. This includes testbed federation agreements between Canada, the US and GEANT and also collaboration agreement on smart city applications among SAVI, Toronto GTHA, Montreal, Albuquerque, FIWARE, and Amsterdam.
In the area of eHealth, we have delivered a strategic implementation plan for eHealth (Health IT) where several priority areas of research have been identified, establishing the strategic lines for effective cooperation and future combined research calls between Europe and North America with existing instruments and initiatives.
Furthermore, we have laid the groundwork for a joint funding program in inclusive design, which involves funding mechanisms from the three jurisdictions, US, Canada, Europe.