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Helsinki symposium emphasises vitality of ITEA programme

19 October 2005 

Download: ITEA Symposium report press release 2005-10-19 word-document - 223 kB


6th ITEA Symposium, 13-14 October 2005, Helsinki , Finland


Introduction of ITEA 2, the follow up to the ITEA research programme on software-intensive systems and services , was a highlight of the sixth annual ITEA Symposium in Helsinki , Finland on 13 and 14 October 2005. There were more than 325 participants at the lively event, which emphasised the vitality of the EUREKA ITEA Cluster, with presentations from politicians, industrialists and academics, demonstrations from some 40 projects, and three parallel technical workshops on software engineering solutions, new businesses and trends in new media that allowed exhibitors to share their experiences.


Three specific projects that have made significant contributions to Europe were featured in the plenary session: FAMILIES – managing software diversity in system families; OSMOSE – open-source middleware for open systems; and TT-MEDAL – test and testing methodologies for advanced languages. The latter won the ITEA Achievement Award 2005 for high-level technical contributions in Europe , awarded during the symposium dinner on 13 October.


The theme of the event was ‘the next wave in the digital transition'. A thought-provoking keynote presentation from Bob Iannucci, head of the Nokia Research Centre in Finland , emphasised the coming explosion in digital technology at home, in the office and on the move. This combines with an increasing focus on Internet protocol networks rather than switched circuits for communications. It also leads to two basic concepts: the office ‘where and when you want it', and the ‘smart' home. The key to both is making the complex easy to use; this requires co-operation across companies. Above all, content will be king – smart, auto created, universal, compatible and unhackable.


Building on European strengths


In his opening speech, Timo Kekkonen of the Finnish Ministry of Trade and Industry emphasised the role of ITEA in building on European strengths in software-intensive systems (SiS). “ITEA contributes to a shared vision and promotes networking between large companies, SMEs, academics and public authorities,” he said. “And it addresses the key challenges facing Europe in terms of low R&D investment, the European paradox (good research but poor product follow through), and the role of information and communications technologies (ICT).”


ITEA has played a key role since its launch in 1999 in maintaining European leadership in the digital revolution built on embedded software-intensive systems and services. The result has been a boost to the competitiveness of many European industries – from the automotive, high-speed train and aerospace sectors, through communications and consumer electronics to healthcare and environmental management.


The increasing appeal of the programme is underlined by the growing number of participants and potential participants responding to each call. “The final call (Call 8) attracted 200 potential partners and more than half were completely new, demonstrating the vitality of ITEA,” said ITEA vice chairman Gérard Roucairol.


More than a change in name


ITEA 2 now aims to mobilise 20,000 person-years of research, involving an investment of €3 billion – making it twice the size of the current EUREKA ITEA Cluster programme. The existing ITEA strategic initiative will have involved some 9,500 person-years of research in 85 projects with 400 participants and funding of €1.2 billion by the time it finishes in 2008.

“ITEA 2 is more than a change in name,” insisted outgoing ITEA chairman Paul Mehring. “It offers new leadership for more complex systems. ITEA 2 will maintain the focus of the current programme as well as adding emerging technologies. Services will play a bigger role and ITEA 2 will extend its scope to include downstream activities on the basis of research, development and demonstration ( R&D&D) . There should also be increased co-operation with the EU Framework Programme – but under conditions, keeping the strength of EUREKA . EUREKA was the best available instrument at the beginning of ITEA and this is still so.”


New ITEA chairman Rudolf Haggenmüller, professor of informatics and mathematics at Munich University , and managing director of FAST, reinforced Mehring's message. “ Europe has achieved a winning position in embedded intelligence and we need to ensure that we don't lose it,” he said. “ITEA was the first major initiative to recognise the importance of software-intensive systems. Now, as we enter the second wave of the digital transition of our society, and in the face of ever fiercer global competition and major societal challenges in terms of employment, security and investment, we need an even stronger initiative based on the very valid ITEA vision.”


Demonstrating real success


The project demonstrations in Helsinki indicated clearly the practical successes achieved by the ITEA programme. Around 40 project teams demonstrated the impact of their work in the project exhibition. Highlights included:

In addition, three projects were featured in the plenary session:

Note to editors


ITEA – Information Technology for European Advancement – was launched in 1999 as a EUREKA strategic cluster to support pre-competitive R&D in software for software-intensive systems. The industry-driven programme lays the foundation for the next generation of products, systems, appliances and services and has put Europe back on the map in the emerging embedded intelligence revolution. The cross-border projects involve partners from large and small companies as well as universities and research institutions. Founding partners include: Alcatel, Barco, Bosch, Bull, DaimlerChrysler, Italtel, Nokia, Philips, Siemens, Thales and Thomson, later joined by the European Federation of High Tech SMEs. Additional founding partners in ITEA 2 are Airbus and Telvent.


More information about ITEA may be found at: www.itea-office.org


For more press information, please contact:
Anne van der Linden
PR & Communications
ITEA Office
Tel: +31 (0)40 247 5590
Fax: +31 (0)40 247 5595
Email: [email protected]