On 18th December, 2015, Waterford Institute of Technology’s TSSG-led EU funded EU-INDIA FI-MEDIA project joined together with the India funded Unnat Bharat Abhiyan initiative to organise a joint workshop, hosted by IIT Delhi and dedicated to the building of an EU-INDIA Cluster to Cluster (C2C) Partnership on ‘Smart Village Ecosystems.
The objectives of the FI-MEDIA / UBA C2C workshop was brainstorming from the perspectives of both EU and India to develop clarity on various research and innovation challenges and potential solutions related to the development of ‘Smart Village Ecosystems’, including Pilots. The program contained the following sessions: Inaugural session, Presentations on Rural projects by IIT Madras, Clustering opportunities for Smart Village Ecosystems in India, Clustering with EU initiatives to enable solutions for Smart villages, and Sustainability: Aligning with existing Programs: Reflections on Policy.
Through the 50+ workshop participants, a wide range of stakeholders were in attendance, including research and innovation organisations, academia, industry, NGO and Government of India and EU.
Mr. James Clarke, the WIT coordinator of the EU-India FI-MEDIA project, states, “In the first year of the FI-MEDIA project, the team members set out to identify real world themes for clustering activities within the areas of interest for C2C partnerships in relation to Future Internet and Media, firstly in India, where the contribution from EU members would be of mutual benefit in the present setting as well as future growth, research, innovation, and sustainability”.
Clarke continued, “The first area for clustering that emerged in India was related to the research and innovation (R&I) for the development of ‘Smart Village Ecosystems’, which is a prominent component of the Digital India programme. With this in mind, the FI-MEDIA partners made contact with relevant clusters and organisations, in both the EU and India, in order to promote this topic as one for the building of a C2C partnership that would be of mutual benefit to both EU and India and this is what has brought us to this important workshop centred on clustering for R&I for Smart Villages Ecosystems. At the forefront of this topic in India is the IIT Delhi coordinated Unnat Bharat Abhiyan initiative, whose vision is to foster a transformational change in rural development processes by leveraging higher educational knowledge institutions to help build the architecture required for an Inclusive India. Likewise, in the EU and indeed in our own research group and Institute, there is ongoing work in leveraging Future Internet for smart agriculture and farming activities of the future”.
The EU-India FI-MEDIA project is a project funded by the Delegation of the European Union to India, under a programme entitled ICI+, which is instrumental in the formation of mutually beneficial EU-India cluster to cluster (C2C) partnerships in a variety of Theme Lots, including Information and Communications Technologies (ICT), which is the focal point of the EU-India FI-MEDIA project. The partners of the EU-India FI-MEDIA project include Waterford Institute of Technology, Ireland, Beyond Evolution Tech Solutions, Gurgaon, and IIT Delhi, New Delhi, India.
Additional information on the workshop, including the concept note and workshop report, can be found HERE