The workshop had been pre-announced by the Indian delegation in the last meeting of the EU-India Joint ICT Working Group (Brussels, 4 September 2013). It was organised by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) in close cooperation with the EU Delegation, and held on 29 April 2014 in New Delhi. DeitY Secretary J. Satyanarayana and Acting Ambassador and Head of Delegation of the EU to India Pavel Svitil opened the event. About 60 participants (by invitation only) attended, including high level representatives of leading Indian research organisations focusing on ICT, e.g. from different Indian Institutes of Technology, the Indian Institute of Science, the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), the IT Research Academy or Software Technology Parks of India. European participants came mainly from industry and academic research institutions, as well as support initiatives.
The introductory part of the workshop focused on the Indian and European R&I systems and funding mechanisms. Morten Moller, Head of Unit for Programme Coordination at DG Connect, presented Horizon 2020 and its ICT elements (by videoconference) while the Spanish S&T Counsellor illustrated his country's ICT landscape and the Spanish Programme of R&D cooperation with India, and referred to a call for proposals with ICT focus currently under evaluation and to another upcoming call in 2014/15 (other Member States with similar initiatives include Finland, the UK, the Netherlands, Ireland, Germany, and France).
For the rest of the day, the workshop provided many participants with the opportunity to give short - "elevator pitch" style - presentations. European participants introduced examples of European research institutions (CNRS, INRIA), past cooperation projects (FP7 ICT BIC project on trust and security; EU-India Grid and Chain-Reds were mentioned by Indian participants), the European Business and Technology Centre (which will in future also work on ICT), IPR in the context of European research, as well as the support action project EURAXESS Links India.
Several Indian institutions presented relevant ICT work, and expressed interest in cooperation with European institutions. For example, the Society for Applied Microelectronics Engineering/SAMEER in Mumbai (and Chennai, Kolkata) is working on medical electronics for diagnostics (cancer, diabetes, malaria, dengue fever), microwave-based technologies for agro-food products, or environmental monitoring (e.g. a lightning detection system). IIT-Bombay mentioned work on electronics for disease diagnosis or the detection of explosives. C-DAC and IISc highlighted their work and cooperation interest on High Performance Computing, and several participants mentioned cloud computing, language technologies (C-DAC e.g. a semantic search engine), software (FOSS) and digital heritage preservation. IIT-Delhi expressed interest in the EU's Human Brain Project. Interesting to note is that both a representative of DeitY and IIT-Madras mentioned their experience and interest in work on wireless communications standards (3GPP).
Klaus Pendl, EU Counsellor for ICT, summarised the overall cooperation possibilities:
For more information, please see the Meeting announcement