Stakeholder Workshop – Smart Networks and Services Partnership

Currently, the next Research and Innovation (R&I) programme proposed by the European Commission, i.e., Horizon Europe, has entered into its preparatory phase. In the cluster of Digital, Industry and Space, the research area of Smart Networks and Services has been identified by the Commission as one potential candidate for implementing a private-public partnership in Horizon Europe. This partnership is envisioned to serve as the successor of 5G PPP in Horizon 2020 and to focus on developing future connectivity and services infrastructure that will support a smooth transition and transformation of digital society and digital economy in Europe and other regions. In particular, a value chain approach will be potentially adopted. The goals are, on one hand, to reinforce and leverage European strongholds in connectivity and create opportunities in multiple related domains, and on the other hand, to revive and build missing yet critical technology competence in Europe for enabling future networks.

One aspect to be included in this context is Components and Devices for future networks. Technically, it will help address the foreseen hardware challenges for developing future networks at mmWave and THz frequencies and meanwhile answer the rising concerns on, e.g., sustainability, security, privacy and potential supply chain disruption. Strategically, it will complement the current European network and system R&I landscape, together forming a complete and secured application-software-hardware value chain as well as an aligned infrastructure-device ecosystem for achieving European strategic autonomy in the next 10 years or so.

To address those ambitious goals and targets, the research area of Smart Network and Services also requires contributions from the European Electronics, Components and Systems research community, Embedded Intelligence research community, and strong support in the proposed Key Digital Technologies Partnership in Horizon Europe, the successor of ECSEL JU in Horizon 2020, especially regarding to establishing a European component and device value chain and strategic autonomy on future network.

In a nutshell, this workshop will contribute to

  • Identify key R&I domains in the area of components and devices for future networks;
  • Identify major industry and academia stakeholders and their interests/competences in Europe;
  • Analyse major challenges and opportunities facing in the area of components and devices for future network as well as their impacts on the development of future connectivity and services infrastructure;
  • Analyse the connection and complementary aspects between network and system research and hardware research, targeting to strengthen R&I competence and European leadership in the area of Smart Networks and Services as a whole;
  • Analyse industry strategies for taking up R&I results into actions and forming European component and device value chain and associated ecosystems.

The main deliverable of this event should consist in a comprehensive overview of the scope of activities leading to technologies of future Smart Network and Services infrastructure with the associated constitutive building blocks and related technological R&I and scientific challenges to be addressed with a 2030 perspective. Contributions and results may be included in the revised Networld2020 Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda.

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