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European Commission

Europe pulls sectors of civil, defence and space industries together to spur innovation

Catherine Feore

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The European Commission presented its action plan on synergies between civil, defence and space industries to further enhance Europe's technological edge and support its industrial base.

The Action Plan aims to exploit the disruptive potential of technologies at the interface between defence, space and civil uses, such as cloud, processors, cyber, quantum and artificial intelligence.  

"With the European Defence Fund we have a strong potential for synergies between innovation in space, defence and civil research & innovation,” said A Europe fit for the Digital Age Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager. “We need this for a number of critical technologies. The idea is for innovations to systematically reach multiple uses by design. And to tap into the huge innovation potential of researchers and start-ups."

Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton said: "Making the most of the European Defence Fund and ensuring strong synergies between defence, space and civil technologies will generate disruptive innovations and allow Europe to remain a global standard setter. It will also reduce our dependencies in critical technologies and boost the industrial leadership we need to recover from the crisis."

Spin-offs and spin-ins

The main goals of the Action Plan are to develop synergies between different EU programmes, explore the possibility for spin-offs from high-end research for Europe’s citizens and to explore the use of civil industry to ‘spin-in’ to European defence projects.

Computer technology

Inauguration of the European High Performance Computing Joint Undertaking Headquarters in Luxembourg

EU Reporter Correspondent

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Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton, together with Luxembourg's Foreign and European Affair Minister Jean Asselborn, and Economy Minister Franz Fayot, inaugurated the headquarters of the European High Performance Computing (EuroHPC) Joint Undertaking in Luxembourg. Commissioner Breton said: “I am delighted to inaugurate the new home for European HPC. Supercomputing is key for the digital sovereignty of the EU. High Performance Computers are crucial to harness the full potential of data — notably for AI applications, health research and industry 4.0. We are massively investing in this cutting-edge technology for Europe to remain ahead of the global tech race.” The mission of the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking is to pool European and national resources to procure and deploy world-class supercomputers and technologies.

Supercomputers will help European researchers and industry to make significant advances in areas such as bio-engineering, personalised medicine, fighting against climate change, weather forecasting, as well as in the discovery of drugs and of new materials that will benefit all EU citizens. The Commission is committed to supporting research and innovation for new supercomputing technologies, systems and products, as well as fostering the necessary skills to use the infrastructure and build a world-class ecosystem in Europe. A Commission proposal for a new EuroHPC JU Regulation, presented in September 2020, aims to enable a further investment of €8 billion to help drive and expand the work of the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking in order to provide the next generation of supercomputers and to support an ambitious HPC research and innovation agenda in the EU. More information will be available in this press release by the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking.

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European Commission

European Health Union: Commission publishes open public consultation on the European Health Data Space

EU Reporter Correspondent

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The Commission has published an open public consultation on the European Health Data Space (EHDS) - an important building block of the European Health Union. The EHDS aims to make full use of digital health to provide high-quality healthcare and reduce inequalities. It will promote access to health data for prevention, diagnosis and treatment, research and innovation, as well as for policy-making and legislation. The EHDS will place individuals' rights to control their own personal health data at its core. The consultation will remain open for responses until 26 July 2021. Health and Food Safety Commissioner Stella Kyriakides said: ″The European Health Data Space will be a crucial component of a strong European Health Union. It will enable EU-wide collaboration for better healthcare, better research and better health policy-making. I invite all interested citizens and stakeholders to take part in the consultation and help us leverage the power of data for our health. This will have to rest on a strong foundation of non-negotiable citizens' rights, including privacy and data protection.″ A press release is available online.

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EU

EU Cohesion policy: Commission launches call for proposals worth €1 million for journalism education

EU Reporter Correspondent

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The Commission has opened applications for educational institutions teaching journalism to apply for a €1,000,000 grant. The Commission seeks potential beneficiaries that will develop a curriculum and teaching materials, set up a deployment strategy, create a network of partners, and implement a course on the European Union and on Cohesion policy for journalism students. Cohesion and Reforms Commissioner Elisa Ferreira commented: “This initiative will allow future journalists to learn about the European Union and get a better understanding of how the EU is supporting the development of their regions and cities. The Commission is keen to encourage training, research and reflection about the Union foundations, current work and its future.” Proposals can be submitted by educational institutions teaching journalism at undergraduate or graduate level. Applicants must be located in an EU member state and be accredited under the legislation of that country. The deadline for application is 24 August 2021. Further details are available on the website of the Commission.

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