Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

HUB4NGI Report Summary

Project ID: 732569
Funded under: H2020-EU.2.1.1.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - HUB4NGI (A Collaborative Platform to Unlock the Value of Next Generation Internet Experimentation)

Reporting period: 2017-01-01 to 2018-06-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Digital technologies and the Internet are rapidly and radically changing the dynamics of both individual and collective human experience, underpinning innovation across private and public sectors, being core enablers for the transformation of the European society and services. This represents a unique opportunity to address some of the most pressing social and environmental challenges.

The Next Generation Internet (NGI) initiative, launched by the European Commission in the autumn of 2016, aims to shape the future internet as an interoperable platform ecosystem that embodies the values that Europe holds dear: openness, inclusivity, transparency, privacy, cooperation, and protection of data. The NGI will drive this technological revolution and ensure the progressive adoption of advanced concepts and methodologies spanning the domains of artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, interactive technologies and more, while contributing to making the future internet more human-centric. This ambitious vision requires the involvement of the best Internet researchers and innovators to address technological opportunities arising from cross-links and advances in research fields ranging from network infrastructures to platforms, and application domains to social innovation.

HUB4NGI is the first Coordination and Support Action that has been assisting the EC in the launch of the NGI initiative with the overall goal of creating a collaborative platform capable of effectively supporting and coordinating activities across the whole NGI context by combining knowledge, tools and processes to reach and engage top-notch Internet researchers and innovators.The selected and carefully designed activities HUB4NGI is pursuing have been organised around 5 main work packages: the NGI APPROACH, the NGI GUIDE, the NGI CATALYST, the NGI BOOST and the NGI FIGHTER. By close interaction of these activities, HUB4NGI is covering strategy and operation by:

Defining a methodology for collecting and assessing the information in the NGI domain.
Grounding the NGI vision, strategy and plans.
Accelerating the NGI programme implementation.
Running community building and outreach activities.

HUB4NGI will ultimately help the whole NGI community to grow and liaise with relevant European, international, national and regional initiatives.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

Through a combination of consultation, road mapping, community building, events and promotional activities, the work done so far has helped understanding and identifying core priorities and needs that must be addressed to grow such an ambitious initiative in a forward-looking perspective. HUB4NGI has been at work to create a collaborative platform that can effectively meet the changing needs of the NGI stakeholders by gathering and growing the community of NGI researchers and innovators through the creation of a commonly shared and understood NGI “culture” for all interested European players and not only. A collaborative working environment run for, and by, the community is essential to enable different and flexible forms of collaboration that can sustain beyond the lifetime of individual projects. This has been the approach and the spirit all HUB4NGI partners followed also in adapting in a dynamic and always constructive way to the needs of the community.

The main results that have been achieved during the first 18 months of the projects can be summarised as follows:

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

"HUB4NGI has marked a major milestone in the history of the NGI initiative as it has been the first Coordination and Support Action that has accompanied the EC and the Future Internet community in moving its first steps and ensuring the successful bootstrap of such a major venture. By building on top of previous initiatives such as the Future Internet Research and Experimentation framework, while liaising and orchestrating efforts with several others such as the the CAPS, the 5G PPP, the IoT, the BDVA, the NEM, etc., HUB4NGI has engaged a number of new comers from several research and innovation fields, including artificial intelligence, blockchain, decentralised systems, data privacy, etc.

While for a Coordination and Support Action it is not easy to talk about progress ""beyond the state of the art"", the HUB4NGI partners succesfully contributed (both at a strategic and operational level) to gather a dynamic and growing community of European researchers and innovators around the NGI initiative, despite no other research and innovation projects were running in parallel, a part from Fed4FIRE+. In this respect, looking at the outcomes and performance we obtained in the first 18 months of activity, it is clear HUB4NGI has really marked a major step forward.

The capability to engage the top notch players working to build a better Internet is indeed a major challenge also because it requires bringing together groups and initiatives coming from different research and innovation fields - dealing with challenges at a technical/technological level on the one hand to a socio-economic one on the other.

The way we live, act and interact is so much impacted by the internet that for HUB4NGI to take the lead in promoting the creation of the boundary conditionsfor a more accessible, secure and reliable internet has the potential to drive the digital transformation for the good of the whole society. The whole HUB4NGI consortium has been fully committed to this ambition."

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