ETD's objective is to build Europe's confidence and competence in key aspects of the Information Society:
by providing information on the potential benefits and stimulation of consensus development, so that citizens, enterprises and institutions benefit from today's technology and are better prepared to take advantage of emerging technologies.
Understanding and effective use of technologies is essential to effective participation and prosperity
A Telework "Shop Window"
During 1997 ETD seeks to further increase the value and use of the website by those who need to reach and engage with the market:
suppliers and buyers
exemplars and innovators
telework associations and other user groups
employers and unions
policy makers and citizens
and to further strengthen the network with partner sites in all European languages and in key international markets.
Getting Europe Connected
Many individuals who are ready to participate in the Information Society encounter barriers and difficulties. During 1997 ETD seeks to partner with other projects and enterprises to make the first steps easier and more productive for new users.
Users complain that many European enterprises (and projects!) waste time and resources on websites that are unattractive or even unusable for the audiences they want to attract. Companies investing in websites too often fail to appreciate and respond to the inherently interactive nature of communications and relationship-building on-line, so that their website becomes a costly overhead instead of a revenue generator. During 1997 ETD seeks to codify this feedback into assessment mechanisms and cost effectiveness guidelines that will improve return on investment in websites, on-line marketing and on-line customer services.
During 1997 ETD seeks to enhance cross-programme concertation initiatives being undertaken through the ACTS Telework Chain (GAT), so as to improve the overall market reach of Information Society initiatives generally and the results-to-cost ratios of individual programmes and projects.
European confidence and competence in telework, teletrade and telecooperation is being monitored directly (scale and quality of on-line activity), through status reports from national coordinators, and by analysis of data from Eurostat, OECD, EITO, FAIR and other sources. In 1997 ETD will publish a first consolidated status report and from 1998 an annual progress report. These reports are expected to be of considerable value for researchers, developers, suppliers and users of Information Society products and services as well as in policy making.
Connecting with ETD
Details alongside refer to the project office. For day to day information:
General information and enquiries
National coordinators and contact points:
Press information service:
(bona fide journalists and commentators, registration required)
ETD media team
The objective is being realised in three main ways:
outreach to citizens, enterprises and institutions, using on-line and conventional methods
working with other projects, institutions and communities of interest to develop a shared vision and common understanding of the opportunities and the challenges
active support to the ACTS Telework Chain (GAT) and the development of confidence-building guidelines
European Telework On-line
ETD's work centres round the effective use of today's technologies. Its home website (http://www.eto.org.uk) is the world's most complete and active connection point for telework, as well as a focal point for teletrade and telecooperation. Facilities include:
a multiview events calendar
a sources and resources database
commented and tested links to other relevant sites and services
frequently asked questions (FAQs) and answers
interactive discussion support
news and announcement services
Available to all the ACTS community and its target audiences, these facilities also support other European programmes and initiatives on an open-to-all basis. A data-driven approach enables any Internet user to add a new event, publication or link to the pool of resources.
Communities of Interest
ETD stimulates on line working among communities of interest, providing advice, guidelines and sometimes the initial web pages and on-line discussion facilities.
ETD supports activities to increase acceptance and uptake of Information Society technologies. Telework examples in 1997 include:
the Commission's Telework 1997 report
telework handbooks in multiple languages
the flagship Telework97 conference in Stockholm, Sept 24-26
contributions to the European IT Observatory (EITO)
European Telework Week, Nov 3-10
ETD partners with NEWSdesk to deliver on-line services to more than 3500 editors and journalists in TV, radio, newspapers and magazines. A library of audio and video clips will further enhance media facilities during 1997. The on-line facilities are complemented by conventional press releases, briefings and interviews. Local language contact points handle responses. ETD participants support a wide range of conferences and seminars.
In Member States
ETD engages directly with users through national coordinators, who develop and communicate a shared vision in ways appropriate to local cultures and make first hand assessments of grass roots perceptions and realities. The national coordinators are active in national and local Information Society affairs.
Summary of Trial
The website is a fully operational working testbed for best practice in on-line methods and the practical application of technologies, frequented by tens of thousands of users. ETD uses action research to develop, test and refine enhanced mechanisms for information sharing and telecooperation and can provide a high profile test or demonstration platform for end user or service support applications.
The main issues being addressed by ETD are:
communicating ACTS concepts and Information Society technologies in ways that motivate busy managers, policy makers and citizens
overcoming prejudice against the technologies, often caused by fear, uncertainty and doubt but also rooted in real concerns
closing the gap with others (notably North America) in awareness, understanding and take up
increasing synergy across European programmes, to make them more meaningful to citizens, entrepreneurs and organisations
understanding the barriers to acceptance of telework, teletrade and telecooperation
understanding the nature and speed of change towards new ways of working
Why synergy across European programmes is essential to develop confidence and competence