Месечни архиви: август 2021

The EU digital decade: A new set of digital targets for 2030

Written by Mar Negreiro.

As part of its digital decade strategy, the European Commission’s March 2021 communication puts forward its vision for new strategic digital objectives for 2030. These should prepare Europe for the roll-out of the next generation of broadband infrastructure with gigabit speeds, including 5G, as well as for the digital transformation of public and private sectors, to enable an array of new innovative services that should transform the manufacturing, energy, vehicle manufacturing, digital government services and health sectors.

Given its importance for European Union (EU) competitiveness, the European Commission is speeding up the digital transformation by co-financing research, development and deployment of innovative technologies in 2021‑2027, under the €7.5 billion digital Europe programme, the first EU programme fully dedicated to the EU’s digital transformation. Other EU programmes will also play a major role in funding digital infrastructure, including the Connecting Europe Facility and cohesion policy. Furthermore, at least 20 % of the EU Recovery and Resilience Facility funds received by each EU country should be dedicated to the digital transition.

There is some concern that not all consumers and businesses in Europe will benefit from the digital transformation, given the current and future digital divide between urban and rural areas and across EU countries. Given the current climate, the high level of investment needed to achieve the transformation might prove difficult to raise.

To measure progress towards the digital decade, the Commission is working on a digital compass method with indicators, which should be put forward for this task later in 2021. This would enable measurement of four dimensions (or ‘cardinal points’): improved digital skills, secure and sustainable digital infrastructures, digital transformation of businesses and of the public sector.


Read the complete briefing on ‘The EU digital decade: A new set of digital targets for 2030‘ in the Think Tank pages of the European Parliament.

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Source Article from https://epthinktank.eu/2021/08/31/the-eu-digital-decade-a-new-set-of-digital-targets-for-2030/

Conference on the Future of Europe: Health

Written by Lena Hirschenberger

The Conference on the Future of Europe’s aim is to debate how the EU should develop in the future and to give European citizens a voice in the process, announced Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in her inaugural address.

People’s ideas will be collected on the Digital Platform, in European Citizens’ Panels and de-centralised conference events all over Europe. The Conference Plenary – comprised of representatives of the Citizens’ Panels, the Parliament, the Council, the Commission, national parliaments, the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, social partners and the European Youth Forum – will then discuss the ideas put forward. Launched in April 2021, the conference is expected to reach conclusions and provide guidance for the European institutions to follow up, by spring 2022.

The conference topics are divided into nine areas, with one additional ‘open’ area, reserved for out-of-the-box ideas. The topics are: ‘Climate change and the environment‘, ‘Health‘, ‘A stronger economy, social justice and jobs‘, ‘European Union in the world‘, ‘Values and rights, rule of law, security‘, ‘Digital transformation‘, ‘European democracy‘, ‘Migration‘, ‘Education, culture, youth and sport‘, and ‘Other ideas‘.

Discussion on ‘Health’ will revolve around how we can secure vaccines and ensure availability of affordable medicines, treatments and medical equipment to fight coronavirus, but also around how countries can coordinate health services better in general: How can we protect ourselves in the event of a crisis? How can we improve European preventive care, treatment and aftercare for major diseases? How can we promote healthy lifestyles in general?

To support the proceedings of the conference, our EPRS policy analysts have prepared research material, available here in reverse chronological order. The following list will continually be updated as the conference unfolds:

EU Covid-19 certificate: A tool to help restore the free movement of people across the European Union
Briefing by David Armand, Jacques Gera de Groot and Costica Dumbrava, May 2021, 12 pages.

What is the European Union doing to fight cancer?
Blogpost by EPRS AskEP unit, May 2021.

The rise of digital health technologies during the pandemic
Briefing by Maria Negreiro Achiaga, April 2021, 10 pages.

Alcohol labelling
Briefing by Tarja Laaninen, April 2021, 12 pages.

Building up resilience to cross-border health threats: Moving towards a European health union
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, April 2021, 10 pages.

EU4Health programme
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, April 2021, 10 pages.

Europe’s Beating Cancer plan: Quick overview and initial reactions
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, March 2021, 12 pages.

Covid-19 vaccination campaigns: The public dimension
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, January 2021, 12 pages.

Coronavirus testing: Contributing to efforts to stem the second wave
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, December 2020, 8 pages.

Next generation or lost generation? Children, young people and the pandemic
Briefing by Nora Milotay, December 2020, 12 pages.

Lifting coronavirus restrictions: The role of therapeutics, testing, and contact-tracing apps ‘In-Depth’ Analysis by Costica Dumbrava, July 2020, 36 pages.
Available in German, English and French

Nutrition labelling schemes used in Member States
Briefing by Tarja Laaninen, July 2020, 12 pages.

Cross-border regional healthcare cooperation to combat the coronavirus pandemic
‘At a glance’ note by Vasileios Margaras, June 2020, 2 pages.

Addressing shortages of medicines
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, April 2020, 12 pages.

Organ donation and transplantation: Facts, figures and European Union action
Briefing by Nicole Scholz, April 2020, 12 pages.

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Source Article from https://epthinktank.eu/2021/08/26/conference-on-the-future-of-europe-health/

Conference on the Future of Europe: European Democracy

Written by Lena Hirschenberger.

The Conference on the Future of Europe’s aim is to debate how the EU should develop in the future and to give European citizens a voice in the process, announced Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in her inaugural address.

People’s ideas will be collected on the Digital Platform, in European Citizens’ Panels and de-centralised conference events all over Europe. The Conference Plenary – comprised of representatives of the Citizens’ Panels, the Parliament, the Council, the Commission, national parliaments, the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, social partners and the European Youth Forum – will then discuss the ideas put forward. Launched in April 2021, the conference is expected to reach conclusions and provide guidance for the European institutions to follow up, by spring 2022.

The conference topics are divided into nine areas, with one additional ‘open’ area, reserved for out-of-the-box ideas. The topics are: ‘Climate change and the environment‘, ‘Health‘, ‘A stronger economy, social justice and jobs‘, ‘European Union in the world‘, ‘Values and rights, rule of law, security‘, ‘Digital transformation‘, ‘European democracy‘, ‘Migration‘, ‘Education, culture, youth and sport‘, and ‘Other ideas‘.

Discussion on ‘European Democracy’ will include topics such as ‘How can we strengthen the voices of European citizens in policy-making?’, ‘How can we fight extremism, disinformation and the perceived distance between people and their elected representatives?’, ‘What should the role of media be in this?’, and ‘How can we strengthen our European democracy in general?’

To support the proceedings of the conference, our EPRS policy analysts have prepared research material, available here in reverse chronological order. The following list will continually be updated as the conference unfolds:

Conference on the Future of Europe – EPRS Ideas Papers
Topical Digest by Silvia Kontanidis, May 2021, 5 pages.

Conference on the Future of Europe
Topical Digest by Silvia Kontanidis, May 2021, 4 pages.

Conference on the Future of Europe
Briefing by Silvia Kontanidis, May 2021, 12 pages.

Transnational electoral lists
Study by Maria Diaz Crego, February 2021, 62 pages.

The practice of democracy
Study by Gianluca Sgueo, June 2020, 64 pages.

Parliamentary hearings of the Commissioners-designate: An analysis of the portfolios of the von der Leyen Commission
Briefing by several EPRS authors, November 2019, 140 pages.

Parliament’s committees of inquiry and special committees
In-Depth Analysis by Eva-Maria Alexandrova Poptcheva, June 2016, 22 pages.
Available in German, English and French

The six policy priorities of the von der Leyen Commission: State of play in spring 2021
In-Depth Analysis by Etienne Bassot, May 2021, 22 pages.

The European Parliament’s appointing powers
Briefing by Micaela Del Monte, May 2021, 14 pages.

Understanding trilogue: Informal tripartite meetings to reach provisional agreement on legislative files
Briefing by Micaela Del Monte, May 2021, 12 pages.

Understanding the European Commission’s right to withdraw legislative proposals
Briefing by Silvia Kontanidis, March 2021, 12 pages.

Reform of the Comitology Regulation
Briefing by Rafal Manko, March 2021, 12 pages.

Passerelle clauses in the EU Treaties: Opportunities for more flexible supranational decision-making
Study by Silvia Kontanidis, December 2020, 80 pages.
Available in German, English and French

Unlocking the potential of the EU Treaties: An article-by-article analysis of the scope for action
Study by Etienne Bassot, May 2020, 140 pages.
Available in German, English and French

Parliament’s right of legislative initiative
Briefing by Silvia Kontanidis, February 2020, 12 pages.

Policy Podcast on Parliament’s right of legislative initiative

Rules on political groups in the EP
Briefing by Laura Tilindyte-Humburg, June 2019, 7 pages.
Available in Spanish, German, English, French, Italian, Polish

2019 European elections: National rules
Infographic ‘At a Glance’ note by Alina Dobreva, Giulio Sabbati and Gianluca Sgueo, April 2019, 2 pages
Available in German, English and French

Understanding the d’Hondt method: Allocation of parliamentary seats and leadership positions
Briefing by Silvia Kontanidis, June 2019, 8 pages

Understanding the d’Hondt method – EPRS policy podcast

Implementation of the Treaty provisions concerning enhanced cooperation
Study by Ivana Diendl Kristo, December 2018, 84 pages.

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Source Article from https://epthinktank.eu/2021/08/05/conference-on-the-future-of-europe-european-democracy/

Innovative technologies shaping the 2040 battlefield

Written by Zsolt G. Pataki.

The global innovation and technology landscape will evolve significantly in the next 20 years, and new and emerging technologies will drive changes in the character of warfare and the capabilities used on the battlefield. Understanding how the technological landscape evolves and what impact this will have on the future battlefield is key to formulating future-proof policies and investment decisions.

In this context, the European Parliament’s Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA)commissioned RAND Europe to examine the challenges and opportunities related to new and emerging technologies expected to shape the 2040 battlefield, following a request from the Subcommittee on Security and Defence (SEDE). The study presents implications stemming from consideration of individual technologies, as well as crosscutting analysis of their interactions with broader political, social, economic and environmental trends. In doing so, the study highlights a need for EU institutions and Member States to pursue a broad range of capability development initiatives in a coherent and coordinated manner, ensure the development of an agile regulatory and organisational environment, and guide investments in technologies most relevant to the European context.

This study investigates the implications of possible advances in six key technology clusters: (1) artificial intelligence, machine learning and big data; (2) advanced robotics and autonomous systems; (3) biotechnology; (4) technologies for the delivery of novel effect; (5) satellites and space-based technologies and assets; and (6) human-machine interfaces. It also identifies several crosscutting implications of new and emerging technologies for future battlefield dynamics and European defence.

One key conclusion of the study is that technological change alone is unlikely to result in fundamental shifts in future battlefield dynamics. Rather, it is the adaptation of military establishments and armed forces (including shifts in strategic mindsets and organisational culture), as well as wider socioeconomic and cultural factors that are likely to shape future trends in the uptake and adoption of new and emerging technologies on the future battlefield. The authors write that technological change, while pervasive, will not diminish the importance of human factors or significantly reduce the uncertainty and unpredictability of the nature of war. Emerging technologies, however, will continue to shape both conventional and unconventional warfare. This will require an equal focus on the impact of technologies on above- and sub-threshold activities, and will potentially blur the boundaries between the two.

To fully understand the future impacts of technological change, interactions among technological trends need to be considered. The extent and manner in which new and emerging technologies are used by European Union (EU) countries’ armed forces will also depend on how these and other technologies will be adopted by adversaries. Access to and control of data represents a key crosscutting enabler on the future battlefield, with new and emerging technologies also providing further opportunities for collecting, managing and analysing data to achieve superiority on the battlefield.

The ability of the EU and its Member States to effectively navigate an increasingly complex technology and innovation landscape represents a key enabler to achieve superiority on the battlefield. Divergences among EU countries, however, may exist with regard to access to new and emerging technologies, financial, cost-related barriers, and differing strategic mindsets. As such, national enablers and barriers may also shape individual adoption pathways for new and emerging technologies among the EU Member States.

This study presents three sets of policy options for EU institutions and Member States to consider in their ongoing effort to prepare for and shape this rapidly evolving landscape, focusing on capability development initiatives, regulatory and organisational environment, and on investment in research, development, technology and innovation (RDT&I).


policy options
  • Pursue a broad range of capability development initiatives: Future technological developments may render existing capabilities obsolete and generate requirements for fostering and sustaining new skills, systems and approaches. Future technological developments may also result in a broader spectrum of sub-threshold activities. These will require initiatives to ensure cohesion within the EU and its societies and institutions, as well as its broader alliances and partnerships. Within this context, EU and Member State institutions should continue to pursue a broad range of capability development investments;
  • Foster regulatory and organisational agility and absorption capacity: The evolving technology landscape suggests a need for EU institutions and Member State defence establishments to create an environment that is conducive to the effective and efficient harnessing of positive impacts of technological advances and to the mitigation of any vulnerabilities. As such, EU countries’ armed forces and their broader institutional and organisational frameworks should work to foster the capacity and agility required to respond to technological advances;
  • Facilitate EU investments and RDT&I activities in relevant technologies by strengthening collaboration with industry: RDT&I in many new and emerging technologies are driven by private sector actors, often originating from outside the traditional defence industrial base. This presents increasing challenges to the EU, its Member States, and their institutions, to harness and adapt to technological advances – especially as these advances occur at a fast pace, are globally accessible, and fall outside their direct or exclusive control.

The STOA Options Brief linked to the study contains an overview of various policy options. Read the full report to find out more, and let us know what you think via stoa@europarl.europa.eu.

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Source Article from https://epthinktank.eu/2021/08/05/innovative-technologies-shaping-the-2040-battlefield/

New STOA study on deepfakes and European policy

Written by Philip Boucher.

Cutting-edge artificial intelligence (AI) techniques have enabled the production of highly realistic videos that manipulate how people look, and the things that they appear to say or do. These fabrications are commonly referred to as ‘deepfakes’. The Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA) commissioned a study to examine deepfakes and to develop and assess a range of policy options focusing in particular upon the proposed AI (AIA) and digital services acts (DSA), as well as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The full study report sets out the key features of deepfake technologies, their technical, societal and regulatory context, and their impacts at individual, group and societal levels, before setting out a range of policy options targeting legislative files that are currently under debate at the European Parliament. These options are also presented in the accompanying STOA Options Brief.

Deepfakes can be used for a wide variety of purposes, with wide-ranging impacts. They can be put to good use in media production, human-machine interactions, video conferencing, satire, creativity and some novel medical applications such as voice creation. However, they also have substantial potential for misuse. The broad range of possible risks can be differentiated into three categories of harm: psychological, financial and societal. The impacts of a single deepfake are not limited to a single type or category of risk, but rather to a combination of cascading impacts at different levels. Since deepfakes tend to have a particular personal target, the impact often starts at this individual level. Yet they can cause harm to specific groups or organisations which can accumulate into widespread harms on the broad societal level. The infographic depicts three scenarios that illustrate the potential impacts of three types of deepfakes on the individual, group and societal levels: a falsified pornographic video; a manipulated sound clip given as evidence in court; and a false statement to influence a political process.

In the final stage of the study, the authors identified several policy options targeting different dimensions of deepfake technologies.

Technology: The technology dimension concerns the underlying technologies and tools that are used for generating deepfakes, and the actors that develop deepfake production systems. Policy options in the technology dimension are particularly relevant in the context of the proposed AIA, and include clarifying the obligations and prohibitions on deepfake technology providers, limiting their spread, developing systems to restrict their impact, and investing in education and awareness raising amongst IT professionals.

Five dimensions of policy measures to mitigate the risks of deepfakesFive dimensions of policy measures to mitigate the risks of deepfakes
© Rathenau Instituut

Creation: While the technology dimension concerns the production of deepfake generation systems, the creation dimension concerns those that use such systems to produce deepfakes. Policy options here include clarifying how deepfakes should be labelled while limiting exceptions and banning certain applications. It also explores whether online anonymity could be limited for some practices, and highlights measures that harness diplomacy, international agreements and technology transfer.

Circulation: Policy options in the circulation dimension are particularly relevant in the context of the proposed DSA, which provides opportunities to limit the dissemination and circulation of deepfakes. They include measures concerning the detection of deepfakes, establishing labelling and take-down procedures, ensuing oversight of content moderation decisions, and slowing the circulation of deepfakes while increasing transparency.

Target: Malicious deepfakes can have severe impacts on targeted individuals, which may be more profound and long-lasting than for many traditional patterns of crime. Policy options in the target dimension include institutionalised support for victims of deepfakes, and addressing authentication and verification procedures for court evidence. Several options are connected with the GDPR, including guidelines on its GDPR application to deepfakes, strengthening the capacity of Data Protection Authorities, extending the scope of personal data protection to include voice and facial data, developing a unified approach for the proper use of personality rights and protecting the personal data of deceased persons.

Audience: Audience response is a key factor to the extent that deepfakes can transcend the individual level and have wider group or societal impacts. Policy options addressing these elements include establishing authentication systems, investing in media literacy, a pluralistic media landscape and high-quality journalism.

Finally, these options are complemented by some overarching institutional and organisational measures to support actions across all five of the dimensions discussed above. These include options to systematise and institutionalise the collection of information with regard to deepfakes to protect organisations against deepfake fraud and to help them identify weaknesses and share best practices.

The full set of policy options are set out in greater detail in the accompanying STOA Options Brief.

Read the full report and accompanying STOA Options Brief to find out more. The study will be presented by its authors at a STOA Panel meeting this autumn.

Your opinion counts for us. To let us know what you think, get in touch via stoa@europarl.europa.eu.

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Source Article from https://epthinktank.eu/2021/08/03/new-stoa-study-on-deepfakes-and-european-policy/

Conference on the Future of Europe: Migration

Written by Lena Hirschenberger.

The Conference on the Future of Europe’s aim is to debate how the EU should develop in the future and to give European citizens a voice in the process, announced Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in her inaugural address.

People’s ideas will be collected on the Digital Platform, in European Citizens’ Panels and de-centralised conference events all over Europe. The Conference Plenary – comprised of representatives of the Citizens’ Panels, the Parliament, the Council, the Commission, national parliaments, the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, social partners and the European Youth Forum – will then discuss the ideas put forward. Launched in April 2021, the conference is expected to reach conclusions and provide guidance for the European institutions to follow up, by spring 2022.

The conference topics are divided into nine areas, with one additional ‘open’ area, reserved for out-of-the-box ideas. The topics are: ‘Climate change and the environment‘, ‘Health‘, ‘A stronger economy, social justice and jobs‘, ‘European Union in the world‘, ‘Values and rights, rule of law, security‘, ‘Digital transformation‘, ‘European democracy‘, ‘Migration‘, ‘Education, culture, youth and sport‘, and ‘Other ideas‘.

The ‘Migration’ conversation is all about finding a predictable, balanced and reliable system. But how? How can asylum and migration in the EU be governed? How do we manage the EU’s external borders, legal migration and integration? How can we deepen international cooperation on migration matters? 

To support the proceedings of the conference, our EPRS policy analysts have prepared research material, available here in reverse chronological order. The following list will continually be updated as the conference unfolds:

EPRS Policy Podcast: The external dimension of the new pact on migration and asylum
May 2021

Pushbacks at the EU’s external borders
Briefing by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, March 2021

Common procedure for asylum
‘EU Legislation in progress’ briefing by Anita Orav, EPRS, March 2021

Recast Eurodac Regulation
‘EU Legislation in progress’ briefing by Anita Orav, EPRS, March 2021

Proposal for a crisis and force majeure regulation
‘EU Legislation in progress’ briefing by Nikolai Atanassov, EPRS, January 2021

Understanding EU action against migrant smuggling
Briefing by Katrien Luyten, EPRS, January 2021

Reforming asylum and migration management
‘EU Legislation in progress’ briefing by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, October 2020

Screening of third-country nationals at the EU external borders
‘EU Legislation in progress’ briefing by Costica Dumbrava, EPRS, November 2020

Asylum procedures at the border
European Implementation Assessment by Wouter van Ballegooij and Katharina Eisele, EPRS, November 2020

Hotspots at EU external borders – State of play
Briefing by Katrien Luyten and Anita Orav with Eulalia Claros, EPRS, September 2020

The need for solidarity in asylum policy
‘At a glance’ note by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, September 2020

The Return Directive 2008/115/EC
European Implementation Assessment by Katharina Eisele, EPRS, July 2020

Unaccompanied migrant children in Greece: New relocation scheme
Briefing by Ingeborg Odink, EPRS, May 2020

Tackling the coronavirus outbreak: Impact on asylum-seekers in the EU
Briefing by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, April 2020

Solidarity in EU asylum policy
Briefing by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, March 2020

Emergency measures on migration: Article 78(3) TFEU
‘At a glance’ note by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, March 2020

Family reunification rights of refugees and beneficiaries of subsidiary protection
Briefing by Anja Radjenovic, EPRS, February 2020

EPRS graphics on migration and refugees

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Source Article from https://epthinktank.eu/2021/08/02/conference-on-the-future-of-europe-migration/