Friday, 7 August 2009

EU information society strategy - consultation on post-i2010 priorities (2010-2015)

The EU are consulting until 9 October 2009 "to help prepare a new EU strategy for the information society, as the current i2010 strategy is coming to a close this year".

You can view the full questionnaire in PDF and view related EU documents (e.g. on ICT for a sustainable 'low carbon' economy, future high speed networks and open internet, e-government etc) before replying to the questionnaire.

This looks important as the strategy will cover a very broad ranging series of topics. Basically, almost anything you can think of that relates to technology or the internet is going to be addressed, including identity management of course.

Here's the full list of subjects:

  1. ICT for a growth and jobs agenda (priorities)
  2. ICT for a sustainable 'low carbon' economy (barriers, quick wins, longer term strategies & best practices)
  3. Improving Europe's performance in ICT research and innovation (resources, research priorities, new markets)
  4. Creating a 100% connected society and economy through a highspeed
    and open internet for all (future proof infrastructures, future of the sustained internet services growth - internet to drive innovation, promoting internet for users)
  5. Consolidating the online services Single Market (level playing field, improving consumer trust & confidence)
  6. Promoting access to creativity at all levels (users' rights in the participative web, sustainable copyright, digital content to cross borders, "development of ICT sector and of European content industry to reinforce each other", digitising cultural resources, steps to open access to content to people with disabilities)
  7. Strengthening EU's role in the international ICT arena (openness of the internet as a global issue, European dimension in international research, European voice in international fora, new models for internet governance & other global challenges)
  8. Making modern and efficient public services available and accessible to all (avoiding new digital divides, dealing with the challenges of participatory web, electronic procurement and electronic identity management, eHealth, impact of ICT on teaching and learning)
  9. Using ICT to improve the quality of life of EU citizens (bridging gaps, improving digital skills, "Enhancing the economic dimension of eInclusion", "Enforcing rights of people to go online", coping with an ageing society, "Promoting a holistic approach").

Unlike the EU's Consultation on the legal framework for the fundamental right to protection of personal data, which was notably short on consultation questions (see e.g. this speculative view as to why!), the questionnaire here does have more info on the aims of the future new strategy:

"Europe needs a new digital agenda to meet the emerging challenges, to create a world beating infrastructure and unlock the potential of the internet as a driver of growth and the basis for open innovation, creativity and participation.

Europe needs to raise its game:
• to accelerate the economic recovery and maintain its world leadership in high-tech sectors;
• to spend research budgets more effectively so that bright ideas are marketed and generate new growth;
• to kick-start ICT-led productivity to offset GDP stagnation as the labour force starts to shrink when the baby boomers retire;
• to foster new, smarter, cleaner technologies that can help Europe achieve a factor or growth; and
• to use networking tools to rebuild trust in Europe as an open and democratic society…

…Europe’s successes to date have been built on a consistent drive for fair competition in telecoms markets and a borderless market for digital content and media services. Europe’s technological leadership stems from its continuous efforts to establish a critical mass of R&D in emerging fields of ICT. It has a great capacity to capitalise on its cultural resources, such as its
vibrant and successful film and media sector and the European digital library. This overall policy thrust remains valid for the future.

However, the success of the EU ICT strategy over the last four years needs to be put in a global perspective. Today it is becoming apparent that, even in areas where it has global leadership, Europe is at risk of losing its competitive edge when it comes to new, innovative developments…"

And the questionnaire summarises issues before listing the questions they are seeking responses on.

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