IIIT-H hosts Virtual EU Day

Hyderabad: IIITH hosted a virtual EU (European Union) Day here in the city today on human centric digitalization through policy dialogue, research and innovation between the European Union and India.

Speaking on the occasion, EU Ambassador, H.E Mr. Ugo Astuto said, “Covid-19 has demonstrated how important the digital dimension is to the economy, society and individual lives. We’ve seen how we can effectively perform many roles remotely, but for these IT tools to work we need adequate infrastructure. The EU and India, two of the world’s largest democracies are working together on various aspects of this. We have been collaborating with IIITH on a Centre of Excellence for IoT and smart cities and look forward to promoting a human-centric digital transformation that serves the needs of the people and empowers them”.

Prof P J Narayanan, Director, IIITH said, “We are glad to work closely with the EU and are honored to be hosting the EU Day. IIITH is firmly grounded in research right from the UG level and in keeping with global perspectives, has several bilateral arrangements between research groups across the world. The EU’s support in setting up a Centre of Excellence (CoE) on Internet of Things (IoT) for Smart Cities at IIIT-Hyderabad based on global standards will help us reach a wider audience and create greater societal impact”.

The program featured eminent speakers from the EU delegation, Indian Government (MEITY), Telangana Government, and academic institutions (IIITH and NITW). Sessions included EU-India cooperation on enablers for a data-driven economy, EU-India Cooperation on the ICT standardization, policy and legislation project in collaboration with IIITH and Future cooperation opportunities between EU and India on Research, Innovation and Education.

In the first session, Mr. Benoit Sauveroche from the EU delegation, presented the concept of data-driven economy, highlighted the challenges and enablers for the same, and why India-EU cooperation is important in this field. He also emphasized the need for human-centric approach for the application of AI.

Sachin Gaur, Coordinator, EU–India ICT Standards Cooperation, summarized the activities of the CoE on IoT for Smart Cities established at IIITH, which also resulted in establishing of Living Lab at IIITH funded by MEITY and State Government in association with Amsterdam Arena and EBTC.

In the panel discussion, Dr. Ajai Garg, Senior Director, MEITY elaborated on the genesis, scope and importance of the living lab at IIITH. Ms. Ramadevi Lanka, Director, Emerging Technologies, Telangana Government reiterated the State’s interest and support to this initiative. The panelists also talked about how to scale it in different cities in the state and country. The data from this living lab will be provided for researchers and startups for training their solutions. They emphasized plans of seeing the implementations of hundreds of living labs in India.

In the third session moderated by Kavita Vemuri, Tania Friederichs, Counsellor, EU Delegation to India focused on the cooperation opportunities between EU and and India on research, innovation and education.

These sessions provided participants a great platform to learn about the next big opportunities in AI and IoT and how India and the EU cooperate in this field. Students also learnt about PhD/Master scholarships as well as student internship opportunities in Europe.EU Days are organized to widen the interaction with academic institutions and students to give them an insight into the EU project, its founding principles, and policies and programmes on a set of focused themes.

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