FET Flagships are science-driven, large-scale, multidisciplinary research initiatives built around an ambitious unifying vision. They tackle grand S&T challenges requiring cooperation among a range of disciplines, communities and programmes, including both academia and industry. They are designed by inception with the aim to convert scientific advances into technology developments, enabling concrete innovations that benefit Europe’s society and economy. Their overarching nature and magnitude implies that they can only be realised through a federated and sustained effort (in the order of 10 years duration).
The overall vision of DigitalAgorà is a future European society that can harness the digital transformation for sustainability, inclusiveness, and prosperity while preserving values like democracy, equality, and pluralism.
This requires not only new ways of using information and communication technologies but a new kind of ICT, where networks become more flexible, robust and resilient, data collection is an aware and controlled user/community-driven process, data analysis is, therefore, privacy-preserving, secure and transparent, and tools for collective awareness and scenario exploration are available. DigitalAgorà‘s unifying goal is to develop the science and technology needed so that digitalization can facilitate coordination, collaboration, and self-organization of people in the complex socio-technical systems of European urban areas.
By the end of this century, most Europeans will be living in cities. Cities are major producers of pollution and emissions as well as of GDP and innovation, requiring but also enabling highly non–trivial transformations to sustainable growth. Cities will be of many different sizes, as they are today, but they will be orders of magnitude more complex in that their dominant features will not be locations but interactions – flows and movements. Cities will be a complex panoply of digital, people and material flows interacting in countless ways, generating repercussions that will require a much more powerful science and much more flexible technology for understanding large-scale complex socio-technical systems than we have today.
DigitalAgorà will develop science and technologies in view of European urban areas and apply them in the context of urban and regional problems. Solutions to these will define the future of Europe as its economy and quality of life will be based on the development of its cities.