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FogGuru: Training the Next Generation of European Fog Computing Experts

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - FogGuru (FogGuru: Training the Next Generation of European Fog Computing Experts)

Reporting period: 2019-09-01 to 2021-11-30

A survey of 1000+ IT professionals has shown that the biggest challenge faced by the Cloud Computing industry today is the "lack of [human] resources / expertise". The FogGuru project has trained eight talented, early-stage researchers (ESRs) with an innovative and intersectoral research program to establish the next generation of European Cloud and Fog Computing experts. Besides their scientific and technical education, the ESRs have received extensive training in technological innovation and entrepreneurship as well as in soft skills. These combined skills have enabled them to fully master the innovation process which stems from fundamental research towards invention and development of innovative products and services.
Highlights from this project include:
- A strong consortium composed of two internationally-acclaimed universities, two successful high-tech SMEs, and two strongly-committed partner organisations.
- An ambitious doctoral programme mixing in-depth technical education in the ESRs' scientific domains, a broad technical and soft-skills training programme to make ESRs knowledgeable in relevant domains close to their expertise area, and a state-of-the-art education in Innovation and Entrepreneurship provided by EIT Digital Rennes.
- A unique, living-lab experience in Valencia (Spain) where the ESRs have deployed their technologies in a real urban Fog Computing platform, and engaged with external beta-testers to evaluate their technologies and refine their technological innovation plans.
- Every ESR dedicated 40% of their time to academia, 40% to one of the high-tech SMEs, and 20% to the living lab, thereby personally driving the full process from fundamental research to technological innovation and engagement with potential end users.
At the end of FogGuru (30/11/2021), the project has achieved its research, training, dissemination, communication and innovation objectives:
The eight Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) have been trained through eight training modules. Being fully engaged in their research activities, the ESRs have published 24 research papers in international journals and conferences.
The Living Lab experience was organised into two batches within a 14-month long period. The FogGuru researchers had the chance to put their Fog Computing research into practice, while solving real-world problems and providing valuable results to the citizens of Valencia in Spain. Working closely with EMIVASA, the company responsible for water management in Valencia, the first group of researchers deployed Fog Computing technologies for intelligent water management. These technologies are particularly important for detecting abnormal water consumption. The second group built a FabLab at La Marina de Valencia, an open space where anyone can learn to process IoT data, while helping La Marina to measure and analyse a number of relevant parameters such as sea level, wave height, wind speed and other weather conditions. Thanks to the measurement results, La Marina is able to improve its services and provide an enriching experience to the port’s visitors. The benefits of the FabLab will be further exploited through joint collaboration between Las Naves and the Polytechnic University of Valencia.
The eight open source Fog Computing technologies, created by the project, have been released. Three of these technologies have been identified as key exploitable results and deployed by other researchers, projects and companies.
Four events were organised during the project’s lifetime, and 13 invited speeches and presentations were held, making the FogGuru’s Twitter account very active.
Firstly, the FogGuru project trained eight excellent ESRs who have become top-notch, recognized experts in the area of Fog Computing infrastructure, technology and applications. By having them work together, the project has effectively created a core of the European future elite in Fog Computing.
Secondly, by strengthening relations and cooperation between excellent academic institutions active at the forefront of Fog Computing (UR1 and TUB) and market-oriented research-intensive high-tech SMEs active in the same area (UH and ELA), FogGuru has created a cohesive European team of scientists and innovators working on a joint research and innovation agenda on Fog Computing issues. In this way the project has significantly strengthened European innovation capacity in the Fog Computing area.
Thirdly, all Fog Computing technologies produced by the project, are available under open source licences granting any user the rights to use them for free.
Fourthly, the Living Lab experience gave the ESRs the opportunity to confront their respective research results with the constraints and difficulties of a real-world deployment of their research contributions, while providing valuable results to the citizens of Valencia (Spain). In this way, the project helped local municipal bodies to overcome their challenges through deployment of the Fog Computing technologies and to offer concrete benefits to the citizens.
Finally, during the hackathon ‘Hack the Fog!’, the FogGuru project brought the Fog Computing technologies close to end users. This event enabled some experiments and engagement with external beta-testers to evaluate the existing technologies, and to support them in building their own Fog Computing applications.
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