“Together we stand, divided we fall”
The world is facing challenging and very uncertain times. We haven’t seen such uncertainty for a long time. When will we get back to normal, how will the world economy recover from the COVID-19 crisis? For ITEA the challenges are also huge, and we are doing all we can to keep our activities and projects running on a high level of quality.
Chapeau to the ITEA Office team for their devotion and hard work. And, of course, a very big chapeau for Philippe Letellier, who said goodbye to ITEA in September. Philippe leaves us with a rich legacy of impactful projects, to which he dedicated himself with great passion and 'panache' during the last 12 years. On behalf of the ITEA Community: Thank you Philippe! And of course also welcome to his successor Jean-François Lavignon, who has been involved in ITEA from the first hour. Jean- François started his first preparations as Vice-chairman last summer, contributing to the Customer Workshop on Cybersecurity, and was already in full swing in his new role at the kick-off of our Call 7 PO Preparations Days.
The Online ITEA PO Days 2020 were a real challenge to organise due to the COVID-19 pandemic. How to organise a network event in which direct, trusted contacts and exchange of delicate ideas and knowledge are crucial ingredients? The ITEA Office and Community proved its agility and creativity in making maximum use of and creating new available online tools to facilitate our partners and project ideas. You can read that the figures, such as a record of 338 participants, were impressive. They prove that the strong commitment and support of bottom-up Calls by industry is not affected by the current times. As ITEA Chairwoman Zeynep Sarılar describes, the Eureka landscape is going through a profound change. The new Eureka Clusters Platform (ECP) has been approved in June 2020. Preparations are now taking place by ITEA and the other EUREKA Clusters CELTIC-NEXT, Euripides, Eurogia, PENTA and SMART. We very much look forward to cooperating with them in the future, e.g. by organising joint Calls on specific topics.
Several countries have shown their interest and support for the new ECP. We are happy to see Canada is one of them. In this magazine the strength, innovation and commitment of Canada to ITEA is put in the spotlight. Jiang Chen explains the crucial role of ICT for the Canadian economy and the way that NRC IRAP is supporting and facilitating the innovative strength of this sector. One of the highlights of Canadian involvement is the recent Board membership of Esri Canada, one of the pearls of the thriving Canadian ICT Community. The conversation of Zeynep Sarılar with Esri CEO Alex Miller gives an exciting view on entrepreneurship and the positive influence of a strong and stable relationship.
Esri Canada is an excellent player within ITEA's Smart City Challenge. In this magazine we see some beautiful examples of Success stories and SMEs in ITEA. Among them ITEA Award winner ACOSAR and C3PO, another project for Smart Cities. The project supports cities in scenario planning, and involving citizens in decision making. This offers great value for cities that also face very challenging and uncertain times. It is through international cooperation that we cope with the challenges. As Pink Floyd already sang in 1982: “Together we stand, divided we fall”.
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