Welcome Address – Frans Timmermans

Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the EU Commission, in charge of Better Regulation, Inter-Institutional Relations, the Rule of Law and the Charter of Fundamental Rights


Define “disruption”: disruption is to break up or throw into disorder.
I think that’s your goal if you’re an innovator: to wake up in the morning and disrupt the world. To discover a new concept that changes everything.
On social media – you get millions of shares. On Euronext – shares worth millions.
And as the inventions conquer the world, we stand in awe.
Innovators are modern wizards. They enchant us with their magic.
The pace of change is bewildering.
Because of our connectivity once secluded realms of technology now team up and share concepts, principles and methods across disciplines, helping everyone progress even faster together.
I’m not telling you anything new by saying we’re in the middle of a fourth industrial revolution.  
And it will upset the current economic order: the way we make things, the way we trade, the way we work, and also the way we live.
I’m an idealist without illusions [as JFK once said]. And I think history has proven me right.
Look at Europe.
We have built a continent open and free. Where democracy reigns. Where there is no death penalty. Where we couple the power of the free market with the responsibility of social governance. A truly unique accomplishment that I frankly believe we should be more proud of.
Over the ages, innovation has improved our lives. We live longer. Fewer people starve. Fewer people starve.
I marvel at what my children know and what they can do (though I don’t tell it to them as they’d become even more unbearably arrogant about what they can do).
I look to innovation and technology to continue to feed us all, to cure old and new diseases, to generate renewable energy to protect our planet, to educate new generations of citizens who have to navigate in choppier seas of information, to map the helixes of life, our earth, our universe, and of course to protect humankind from natural dangers, but also from itself.
So, I welcome disruption.
But there are side effects too, some small, some big.
It is great when robots do our laundry and other chores. But what does it mean for people whose jobs can be automated?
It is great when people all around the world can meet and talk through the internet.
But what when extremists and terrorists can preach, recruit and marshal their moronic minions to kill and maim in the streets of London, Brussels or Paris?
It is great when sometime soon artificial intelligence can help our cars steer safely through traffic, minimizing road mortality.
But what happens once we reach the pivotal point when AI becomes smarter than us?
Some say God created man, and then man rejected God. Today we create sophisticated algorithms… Can they one day reject us?
As technology surges forward, we need to take a step back and look in the mirror.
Are our ethics, our norms, our laws adapted to these new developments? Can we still be sure that we – we humans – will still control technology?
Going back to the basics. Who are we? What do we stand for? What kind of world do we want our children to live in?
Technology has no innate morality. Nuclear power can cure and it can kill.
Innovation above all is a moral and political challenge.
For innovation and technology to serve us, we – humanity– must endow innovation with true meaning.
The next generation internet must be more than the Internet of things.
It must be the Internet of values.
This means that, first, we must protect democracy and our way of life.
In Europe, we are perhaps too used to living in a free, peaceful and open society.
But nothing is irreversible, nothing unbreakable, nothing inevitable.
Our values are under threat. Not only from the outside, but alas, also from within.
And the 4th industrial revolution also carries the risk of “Our democracies being hacked”
Hacked, by inequality, by the ever-greater power and money in the hands of a few mighty Internet giants.
Hacked, in very literal terms, by hackers and trolls disrupting politics at home and abroad or waging a hybrid war.
Hacked by the Internet echo chambers, that stop us from listening to each other and seeing each other.
By the misinformation revolution.
By the new illiteracy: the inability to tell fact from fiction, the loss of critical thinking.
Hacked, most recently, most cowardly in London by fanatics, whose rejection of modernity does not stop them from spreading high-tech hatred and taking it to our streets.
I tell you here today, that we will not allow murderous extremists to use our freedoms against us, to highjack the information freeway and turn it into a digital highway of death.
We created the EU Internet Forum in 2015 for member states, stakeholders, industry to take action. Now four of the largest companies (Facebook, Twitter, Google and Microsoft) have developed a database to help address this problem.
The fight goes on while together we develop new means to counter terrorist content online with the objective of faster detection of terrorist content on the platforms.
Secondly, democracy will only be viable if we ensure no one gets left behind.
Uber might put taxi drivers out of a job – but then driverless cars may put Uber drivers out of a job.
White collar jobs are no longer safe, either. 
Sure, new jobs will be created. Most likely they will require more and better skills.
But as so often, those with the least education and lowest incomes stand to suffer the most.
We say to people: learning becomes a life-long duty. You must adapt. You must be flexible. Which is true.
But at the same time our mortgages, our rents, are not flexible. Nor is our insurance, our groceries, or the schooling of our kids. This poses a challenge.
Schumpeter’s ‘creative destruction’ is a great concept, leading to great progress. But if you lose your job in the meantime you will wonder angrily: “Progress?”  What progress?
So, if we want to become more flexible, it is inevitable to start thinking about things like universal basic income. To create enough stability to allow us to be more flexible.
So, to meet these challenges, what should we do?
Against this deep-set fear of losing control, populists offer protection by turning back the clock. Offering protection by raising walls. First on land, then online.
But walls are not a solution. Bridges are. Together Europe can build bridges and face these challenges.
Simple math shows that our global strength in Europe is in numbers, in our diversity, in our values, our openness and our unity in seizing the future.
Both my grandfathers were coal miners. I am proud of that coal mining tradition. But I would never dream of sending people down the pits today.
Renewables are becoming cheaper by the minute, are clearly the way of the future, are clearly the better deal.
We must reject a ‘YOLO’ (you only live once) society. We must instead embrace a ‘WOHOW’ (we only have one world) society.
President Trump did the climate no great favour last week, to put it mildly. But as America turns to coal, the Commission continues its work on implementing the Paris Agreement with the rest of the world, its work on eco-design making appliances more efficient, on the circular economy moving towards a waste-less economy, and in the future on plastics that great scourge of our seas and our health, taking the lead with a strong sustainability agenda, and calling out to scientists and innovators everywhere: join us in creating jobs and safeguarding our planet.
But it’s also about people.
To stop the social fabric from ripping to shreds, we must redraw the social contract, and re-affirm our promise that no one in Europe gets left behind.
This means empowering women and men. For instance, through our work-life balance proposal a few weeks ago, offering more flexibility for both women and men, ensuring they have a real choice in fulfilling their lives as parents, carers and professionals as they see fit, and marshalling the unused potential of women talents to the benefit of Europe.
We must make sure that everyone will share in the fruits of progress. That free trade turns into fair trade. That we uphold our high standards of health and safety globally.
That’s why we have presented a globalisation paper to start the debate on how we can harness globalisation, making it work for everyone, not just those at the top of society.
We do all this, and more, because we need to secure the future of our European open society and our citizens.
And we must do this, because if we don’t do this, the forces of illiberalism and xenophobia that prey on crises might be more successful next time around.
So, my conclusion is, I have great hope for the next generation internet. It’s the next generation of Europeans who will make the next generation internet.

Europe is their natural habitat. They travel from Brussels to Bucharest like my parents did from Maastricht to Amsterdam. More easily, and cheaper by the way. Those like my son, born in 1989, the year of miracles, have only know a Europe that is undivided, and at peace.
Those born in that year are also the first truly digital generation, who have never known the analogue world. Cassette players, rotary dial phones, faxes, it is all old school to them. Heck, it’s even old school to me now!
Our young generations are idealistic, but without being ideological. Inspired not by visions, but driven by values.
If they can harness their enthusiasm and organise themselves, I’m sure this new generation, true digital natives, true natives of Europe, will meet the challenges that face us.
So, let us move forward into the future with high hopes, let us embrace disruption, but let us also heed the words of one of the greatest minds of our time [Einstein], who said:
“Concern for man and his fate must always form the chief interest of all technical endeavours. Never forget this in the midst of your diagrams and equations.”
Thank you very much.

Welcome Address – Carlos Moedas

Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation.


From the Internet of Things to the Internet of Humans
Mr. Bonvicini, Mr. Giscard d’Estaing, MEP Buzek, MEP Lamassoure, Mr. Madelin,
Ladies and gentlemen,
Good afternoon!
First, I want to thank Baracchi Bonvicini for inviting me here today. I want also to acknowledge and thank the presence of President Giscard D’Estaing a man who is an inspiration for us all.
Steve Case, says that we are just at the beginning of the third wave of the internet.
In the first, we built the infrastructure of the internet.
In the second wave, we built the apps on top of that infrastructure.
And now we’re just at the tipping point of a new wave. We’re at a point where we will merge the digital and the physical world. Where the internet won’t just be a tool. It’s becoming a part of our daily lives as never before. The internet is entering the highly regulated areas like health, education, energy, food, water or manufacturing.       
This is where we are. And it’s going to have such a huge effect on our lives.

  • It will change the way we work
  • And it will change the way govern
  • It will fundamentally change the way we think

First, look at work. Take the health sector. When you compare deep learning with the best specialists in radiology, deep learning comes out on top. There was a study on this in 2015 in the US by a company called Enlitic. Radiologists failed to detect 7% of cancers. The deep learning algorithm missed 0%.
That means that in the health sector the future of work will be very different.
I asked my radiologist if he was afraid of it and he said: Not at all. It will give me time to look more holistically into the patients instead of doing the repetitive task of looking into a scanner.
But it’s not just health.
This will change professions at their core. People used to know things by heart. They were trained to mechanically repeat tasks. These will be gone. Repetitive tasks will be done by machines. What happens then?
The doctor will have more time to focus on the patient.
The engineer and the architect will have more time to be creative.
The Lawyer will have more time to explore its profession in innovative ways.
And the Entrepreneur will have more time to have ideas.
Second, it will change how we govern.
Now Parliaments legislative process takes up to five years. But technology is moving much faster than that. Legislation can’t keep up. After five years we are legislating for products that don’t exist. Or for things that are completely different by then. So it will have to change. And that means our governance will have to change. Stakeholders will have to play a bigger role. Governments will need to legislate with everyone around the table. So that the result is truly user driven and user centric. And that’s something we don’t always do today.
What do these changes mean? If the internet is becoming part of our lives we cannot be as passive as we were. This means that we’re going to have to make political choices in the third wave.
Look at Artificial Intelligence. What do we want it to be?

  • Do we want it to replace us as human beings?
  • Do we want it to improve our intelligence?
  • Do we want it to make us better as a people?

One thing is for certain: governments need to make this decision very quickly.
I want two things from this third wave:
First, I want the internet to help make me smarter. But not replace me.
If we do this, we can build a better future. It means less time doing boring repetitive tasks. Think of how many people are overqualified for their jobs. It means people will be more engaged in what they are doing. And more jobs based on our real skillset.
This is a huge change for our future. But I see it as a positive change.
Second, I want the internet to help give us purpose.
Mark Zuckerberg talked about this in a recent speech. He was referring to a well-known story about John F Kennedy. The President visited NASA space centre and saw a janitor carrying a broom. He walked over and asked what he was doing. And the janitor responded:

Mr. President, I’m helping put a man on the moon.

 That’s the kind of purpose I’m referring to. That sense that we are part of something bigger than ourselves.
We have so much access to technology. Digital everything is such a big part of our lives. And we’re constantly connected. But there’s still a void. Because we see the internet as a tool. As a resource. 
But the internet will completely permeate our lives in the third wave. So, it cannot remain just a practical tool. It will be part of us. So, this is where we go from the internet of things to the internet of intelligent things. 
I think it’s up to this generation to use the internet to create purpose. To connect everyone and use this global network to solve the biggest challenges we’re facing.
We will create purpose if we connect people to solve climate change. If get all the data together and cure cancer. If you reduce inequality.
We’re at a crucial moment. The third wave of the internet is where we choose. The internet of humans is not the world of tomorrow. We’re already on the edge of this new phase of the internet. It’s already here. Whether we are ready or not. 
Let me finish with the words of Mark Zuckerberg:
Every generation has its defining works. More than 300,000 people worked to put a man on the moon – including that janitor. Millions of volunteers immunized children around the world against polio.
These projects didn’t just provide purpose for the people doing those jobs, they gave our whole country a sense of pride that we could do great things.

Welcome Address – Alain Lamassoure

Alain Lamassoure, Member of the European Parliament for the south-west of France

It is a privilege and honour for me to welcome this Next Generation Internet Summit here in the European Parliament on behalf of the President Jerzy Buzek and all my present colleagues in this room. We are very proud as members of this Parliament to have played a role in the setting up of the Atomium European Institute which is very important and influential network for the most prominent European scientists. If you allow me a few comments from my part to compliment and elaborate on what has just being said by Commissioners and I am very happy to contribute to their work.

Science is now living through a Golden Age. Progress of fundamental knowledge in the infinitely small as the infinitely large. Explosion of technological applications upon communications, materials in daily life. Scientific and technological evolutions by the interconnectional disciplines.
For example, the so-called boson of prof. Higgs, dark matter, exoplanets, sequencing of human genome, hybridisation, human machine, stem cells, nano materials, artificial intelligence which has been already mentioned are some examples.
This expansion of science in the meaning of the expansion of the Universe, requires from us, the policy makers three types of moral duties:

The First is to give its right place to science in politics, in our decision making. Too many political decisions are still based on incorrect, partial, biased, untreated(?) information.
Example: I was very strict when I was in charge of the budget in the government in my country some time ago. To note that economic policy lies to less reliable data then the meteorology for their forecasts does. We do not know what the weather will be tomorrow, that’s clear, but at least we do know if it is raining now or if the weather is nice today. Well, we have learned only last week what the accurate rate of growth of French industry was three years ago. Don’t let ourselves be deceived by the big data mirage. It all depends on the quality of the data. When it comes to the economy controversies between new Keynesian and the supply – side theories, still reminds us too often of the theological debate between heliocentrism and geo- centrism three or four centuries ago.
Nobel Prise winner Jean Tiroles’ book “Economics of common good” makes a good assessment between what the contemporary economy contains – of science and ideology.

The Second duty to give science all its place, but nothing more than a right place. Science is means, the wellbeing of mankind is the purpose. However, whether is big data, genetic medicine or weapons still to be invented, science gives us an unprecedent power on life quality, on death, but also on biological and social identity of the people of our time.
JFK has been quoted, I will quote him again. In its wonderful inaugural address, JFK quoted Samuel Pisar’s words: “Man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life”. It was 1960. He would add today – and the power to choose and change all forms of life.
It’s not for scientists to decide on collective use of their research, it is indeed for policy makers, democratically elected. It took us centuries to make science independent of religion. The Brazilian flag reminds us of the glare of positivist philosophers for whom science was a substitute for religion. Scientism was a wrong way. Carried away by the enthusiasm of their discovery, today California researchers pretend that their science is able and it is allowed to prescribe the future of man kind. It is a current debate now between transhumanism and post humanism. But Europe is birth place of humanism and it must remain so. Science will never be able to give the answer to the fundamental question of human anguish – the meaning of life.

The Third and last duty for us politicians, policymakers – the fight against the new obscurantism. It is the opposite risk of overestimating the role of science. In all of our societies, a form of resentment has been developed against progress and against science.
Originally, where the fight of the researches themselves upon the possible consequences of their works. Let us remember the prof. Oppenheimer reciting to him famous words of the Indian wisdom book Bhagavad Gita in front of the first nuclear explosion in Los Alamos in 1945: “Now I become death, the destroyer of worlds”.
Within the public opinion, the mixture of remorse about 20th century tragedies, but the resentment without the capacity of science to cope with the most serious diseases and kind of giddiness about too rapid progress, leads to prejudice against science or which is worst, to a classification of what’s good and what’s bad morally in the progress of science, or even in categories of science.
For instance, all forms of chemistry of nuclear physics, of nano science are demonised as such. Not the outcome, but as such. Their scholars or specialists are considered as sponsored by lobbies. Somehow it is civilisation regress.
For the good use of science, we do need elective ethics. It is probably one of the most urgent serious issues of this century of globalisation. How to work on it, whom with, how to define common rules, how to make this rules work.
This network is the prefiguration of how to approach this major issue of our time.
We thank for this, Mr. Chairman and all of you, good luck, thank you.

Welcome Address – Questions & Answers

Robert Madelin:
Ladies and gentlemen, because our speakers are disciplined and because we have lacked the presence of Mr. Buzek, there is ten minutes from the comments on the floor, and there will be no Q&A in the next panel, so if you have questions, now you have 10 minutes to ask them. The floor is open.
I have a question which I would ask VP Timmermans, because you have made your own remarks and then listened both to what your fellow commissioner and Mr. Lamassoure said. We think we have a purpose, we fear of vision, we think we have values, but we need to update them.
What is the process, what is the method to pick up Mr. Lammasoure’s closing comments that you think is legitimate, and particularly a legitimate method here at the European level which can add value upwards and downwards, whichever way you think that may work.

VP TImmermans:
Thank you for that easy question, I think what is most important having this, also to the other contributions is we create helixes where we interface what people are doing at different levels, on different issues. We have seen in the technology business, that jealously keeping what you know looks nice for a while, but it does not help anyone and Open sourcing has become the thing what makes companies grow and what makes science evolve even faster. 
I think in what I would call a post paternalistic society, such is as not just development of science or the confrontation of different cultures or opinions, but also the question of regulation needs to be something that is Open source more than we did in the past. 
Just imagine that in this, in how we make laws – European Parliament, Council and Commission, even the simplest of laws take up to two to three (2-3) years to be adopted. Then you relate that to what is happening in the technological world and it is simply and completely out of sync. We need to rethink the way we legiferate, not just legiferate, but also how we regulate at a lower level and how people relate to regulation. Policing is not going to help, but being part of it is probably, what is going to help. 
And final point, which I did not make in the mine intervention which I think is extremely important – we need to have a better understanding between generations, because I truly believe that my kids brains are wired differently, because of the technological revolution and when I see my kids’ generation, they are very idealistic but they are also very individualistic. They sometimes lack the capacity to organise and there I think there is this cross generations of something we can learn from each other, to create networks and organisation and to understand that it takes a village to take decision on these issues.

Robert Madelin:
Thank you. I think the openness point is important, but also again we touch a paradox because you say on the one hand more open processes, on the other maybe that it is actually contrary to the run of play at the moment. Maybe we are closing down, although it is never been easier to do open processes and Mr. Lamassoure’s comment about how the weather is better than economics, if you connect an economy well enough, and Estonia is good example, there are people working between Oxford and Tallinn at the moment who can tell you what weather is today in that market, because of the internet of the economy. Because of real time knowledge of payments, purchases, transactions and so maybe those sorts of connections can help to be part of the regulators answer.

MEP Lamassoure:
You are perfectly right, I am going to Tallinn, Estonia in two days. 
One more comment. Of course, we have a problem of interpretation of values. We have common values among Europeans, those values we refer to Article 2. of our treaty and in the 61st articles of the admirable charter of fundamental rights of the human being. But, even among Europeans, we give to these common values different interpretations. 
The right for life, for instance, is interpreted differently in some member states. For instance, abortion is still banned in some member states and permitted elsewhere. But, our values are still common values and when we compare with the rest of the world, I take just one example: Bioscience, for instance nobody – no European scientist and hopefully no so- called West consensus would dare set up, invent a chimera but we fear that elsewhere – in Asia, South Korea or I don’t know, values are different, legislation is different and possibly some chimera will be brought to life someday. 
What can we do? In Europe and at global level it is a big question mark. Needless to say, I have no answer.

Robert Madelin:
We will benefit from the next panel from voices from many continents and one of the interesting questions is whether the good old-fashioned multilateral west felian methods of answering questions like that have a new validity today, when some if our leading nations, I’m sure of that and popular opinion is equally nod widely supportive of things like the World Trade Organisation, so interesting question.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I now see a forest of hands. The lady in number 69 – she cannot see the number.

Sophie in’t Veld:
My name is Sophie in’t Veld, member of European Parliament in the Liberal Group and I have a remark for Mr. Lamassoure, but if you allow me one devious observation before I make that remark.
I think, when we talk about next generation then maybe all male panels are not really 21st century, which is of course not your fault, but I think this is just not of today anymore.
I was triggered what Mr. Lammasoure said about values, because I think that is, it is a key issue, what VP Timmermans rightfully underlines – we are struggling with the differences in speed between the legislative process which does require time in order to be careful and high quality and the speed of the technological change. And I think the only answer to that is that we do need to define our shared values because that will be the basis for legislation and regulation whatever the procedure will be like and I think that is why is so important that we get beyond the stage where we say – Oh, no! Values is not the matter for the EU, it is strictly national. It is not, it never has been, but it certainly shouldn’t be. 
If we want to make European legislation, it can only work i f we do so on the basis of shared values. Does that mean that every single individual, Eu citizen is going to share the same values – of course not. But neither do they at national level. But we need to stop being coy, it shouldn’t be a taboo anymore. Yes, we do have to adopt shared values which are the basis then of our common policies, whatever the legislate process is going to be like. That is the only common response we can have to whatever technological progress is going to be

Robert Madelin:
The interesting question is what is the status of these values that we develop quickly. Can we approach an agile principle of law making and discovery of values such that, when we have said something, its open to further reiteration – it’s a rough consensus rather than saying we make something and then it sits there for 50 years and it takes another 50 years to change. 
The status of the statement is what gets in the way of agility. I think we have a sort of existential problem for people in institutional world. 

Sophie in’t Veld:
I do not think, I am not sure I fully understand, but of course, the whole debate on values has never been static. It is always ongoing, always. There is always been periods in history where we somehow had to respond to very rapid either technological changes or changes of a different nature, but the basis always have to be those common principles, common values and they have to be common to the community of the European citizens. That is what I am trying to say, because otherwise you cannot cope with the challenges in whatever legislation process you have.

VP Timmermans:
The problem is if you believe that guarantees of morality are the ones sitting in the Parliament, sitting in governments, creating legislation and I think you will never get it right because technology moves too fast, is I think we have strong interest incorporating in creatives of technology, the moral texts and balances we as a society want to have. We should rethink the role of legislation. Legislation isn’t the only way to deal with this. I think there is corporate social responsibility, but corporate moral responsibility is going to be more and more important in the years to come because of the speed that which society develops. 
We should also make sure that we have the society that can create that at THAT level, rather than just leave it with Parliaments, judges and politicians. 

Sophie in’t Veld:
Indeed, because legislation reflects morality and common values that have been set in the public debate and not the other way around.

Robert Madelin:
That is what we hope and then what happens, so the interesting thing is on the corporate role – will companies accept feedback loops, as the price for the validation of their role and for the institutional legislators the question is whether we agree to one would agree to delegate more, to leave more space for secondary and more spontaneous principle compliant interventions.
These are very hard things to say yes to, especially when we are doing institutional jobs, but there are companies – there are companies in the room. Companies are not comfortable either about being accountable for the self-regulation. It is a difficult discussion.
Of course, now everybody wants to continue and then the Chairman will start the next session late. I think finishing on time is the key.
I give to one colleague the floor at Michelangelo’s suggestion – prof. Floridi, who happens to hail from Oxford, an interesting choice on the part of my neighbour because you actually do a lot of this stuff around ethics which VP Timmermans talked about.

Prof Floridi:
Thank you, I am honoured to be able to have a word in this and I would like to thank you for your intervention.
It is more like a clarification and wonder if you would be happy with this clarification:
This myth about speed of technology and that we cannot catch up – when it comes to ethics, is about direction. And if we know where we are going, you cannot get there fast enough. So, can we just talk about where we are going and not how fast we are going there. Because, if we like the direction – well, I just wait for the technology to be even faster than it is now.
The problem is that we don’t have a direction and therefore, we are worried about how fast we are going into the darkness. How do we cope with this direction is one thing and speed is another.

Carlos Moedas:
I think is a very interesting comment you have made, because I think that the problems of today – you are regulating the micro, you are regulating products, you are regulating things that five years down the road do not exist anymore. I think that your comment is really wise in the sense that we should be regulating the direction where we go and if you regulate the direction, then you are not afraid of how fast you go.
The thing is that we are in totally different world, where the date today of the legislator goes to a meet & greet (?) of the legislation of the product of the thing, of the innovation. And that is why as a Commissioner for the Innovation I get very scared of it because I see that the lot if the great things I see, there will not see the light, before there will be some regulation at some point that will just are catching and not letting go and I think that – (to prof Floridi) I just wanted to thank you for that comment, because I think that something that we should repeat are for the governments, for the legislators, for the MEPs and the experience that we are doing that was created in the Netherlands, called The Innovation Deals it is exactly that. It is about putting people around the table and discussing not just the legislator, but putting the companies, putting the regulators and saying: What is the impediment here? It is because we went too much to the micro or not? If not, we are not regulating the direction.
Thank you for your comment, very inspiring.

Robert Madelin:
Ladies and gentlemen, I think we have set the bar fairly high for both of the next panel and for your discussions in different sessions over the next couple of days. 
The challenge I take away is the tension between speed and direction, if you can’t have a direction if the speed is zero, so there is somewhere attention of getting the direction right, but also having a common sense that we are making headway as one would say.
And secondly, the challenge to all of us to conceive something completely different, in terms of the societal framing of the Internet that will be completely different and there I liked the key words I heard around feedback loops, heliacal process, open processes and I think that is something that we can take to the next session.
A hand of applause for our Opening panellists.

Opening Session – Andrus Ansip

Andrus Ansip, European Commissioner for Digital Single Market and Vice President of the European Commission.

Ladies and gentlemen
It was thanks to a visionary memo sent by Tim Berners-Lee that the World Wide Web came into existence.
Its title was innocent: “Information Management: A Proposal”.
And it was written in 1989, almost 30 years ago.
Who knows what digital life will be like in the next 30 years? 
Today, we mostly take the internet for granted.
Cast your minds back to the 1990s: slow analogue dial-ups, the clunky sound of a modem connecting – if it connected at all.
Not too many websites and not much content either.
Since then, the technology change has been constant, astounding – and gradual.
Today, you can access the internet at incredible speeds from almost anywhere.
You can have it in your pocket or hold it in your hand.
With the internet, now is a good time to reflect on how we want to place the EU for the future. This is the point of today’s conference as we consider initiatives for the Next Generation Internet.
There would seem to be a choice of two paths:
Is Europe to remain a mere consumer of internet technology, services and applications – and perhaps be progressively dominated by other countries, or companies?
Or should Europe become more pro-active? To develop internet tech that will better serve its people and put them more in control of the digital society where they live?
I think this is the choice that we should prefer – in partnership with other like-minded countries.
Our Digital Single Market project already does a lot to promote start-ups and encourage innovation. But there is a lot more we could do, such as reinforcing this commitment with more funding for tech research, for example.
We are looking into this, to anchor technology as a firm priority in the EU’s next seven-year funding period.
The next generations of tech innovators represent Europe’s digital future.
I strongly believe in investing in start-ups and hi-tech research, both politically and financially: to build a new class of internet innovators, to help them grow and compete globally.
The Digital Single Market has a strong focus on data in all its aspects. This is vital, given how much we already depend on data– and will increasingly depend in the future.
It also recognises the importance of cybersecurity and online privacy, common technical standards and interoperability, especially in areas like the Internet of Things.
And it addresses emerging growth technologies that will define our digital future – like high-performance and quantum computing, big data and cloud services.
But we need to look even further ahead than that.
Nobody really knows how the internet will look by 2050, although we can see some trends that promise to turn today’s global internet landscape upside down.
Data will need to be instantly available whenever – and wherever – anyone needs it. Big data and metadata will touch nearly every aspect of our lives.
Data flows will be all-important, as they are now – but even more so. Global volumes are already huge.
They are set to rise further, coming from both public and private sectors.
The age of the zettabyte – or one trillion gigabytes – has already arrived.
Some forecasts put the global data sphere rising 10 times from current levels by 2025, to 163 zettabytes.
But by 2050, who knows? After the zettabyte comes the yottabyte.
We have to prepare for this data deluge: storage, infrastructure, security, transferability – to name just a few issues to tackle.
In the next 30 years, if not sooner, the Internet of Things should be a widespread reality.
Analytic and processing capabilities will have progressed and offer intelligent machine learning. Robotics and artificial intelligence will be more system-embedded and mainstream. 
We could imagine depending less on specific connected devices, and more on the most appropriate one that is immediately to hand.
In the years to come, that is unlikely to be a home or office desktop, and perhaps not a laptop either.
Most forms of future computing infrastructure and networks will be defined by software, not hardware.
We may be using keyboards far less, perhaps relying more on voice or gesture recognition. Or something else entirely.
Sensors will become more widespread – on our bodies, in homes and vehicles.
The cloud will dominate, based on high-speed mobile access – as well as its on-the-go convenience.
This is conjecture, of course. But I believe that it is informed conjecture.
While nobody can guarantee anything, it does seem – here in 2017 – that this is the way that things may go.
And in all these areas, there are tremendous opportunities for research and innovation – and for Europe to be in the forefront of this research.
Why not create a single e-identity? Individuals would be in full control, using it to connect securely to different technologies and platforms.
This would also give people confidence, since we know that they have a lot of different concerns about the digital age:
– about digitisation’s effect on society and jobs, about cybersecurity and privacy;
– about online power being concentrated in the hands of a few big companies and platforms;
– about the impact of artificial intelligence.
This is a long list of worries. Some justified, some perhaps less so. It boils down to people’s genuine perception of a loss of control. That is not going away.
Certainly, society has expectations for the future – and people want to remain in control in the online environment.
What we want to do now is to address the internet’s most critical technical and use aspects so that those expectations are met.
The plan is to discuss and analyse new network architectures, software-defined infrastructure, and new concepts for services and applications.
This includes e-government and how people connect to public services, providing a safe trusted platform for new technologies.
We will start by bringing together today’s best internet innovators, including start-ups and SMEs – with corporates, with the academic and scientific research communities, with policymakers.
Today’s conference is a useful step in that direction.
With the Next Generation Internet, I would sum up our aim as this:
– to put Europe at the heart of internet technology developments;
– to help Europeans push farther the frontiers of tech;
and to retain people’s trust in the online environment as well as their internet engagement.
Thank you.

Opening Session – Houkun Hu

Houkun Hu, Deputy Chairman of Huawei’s Board of Directors.


Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. It is been a great pleasure to be here to join this very important discussion about Next Generation Internet. VP Ansip and other panellists just shared with us that there is an exciting future around a head office(?) where we can expect the emergent technology and the next generation of Internet will tremendously change our lives.
But at the same time, obviously we are going to have some realistic worries and concerns.
From my point of view, the Internet has been the vast powerful force in the human history that disrupt our lives, business and the whole society and I am quite confident that the Next generation of internet will eventually help us to converge the digital world and the physical world. I think it is important for us to have this kind of discussion to jointly explore how we are going to make sure that the next generation of internet will bring us a better life, a safer world.

Let me give you a little introduction of Huawei, because probably some of you are not familiar with this company. We are a global supplier of OCT technology and products. If you are here, in Europe, using the mobile phone, you are most probably using the technology and networks provided by Huawei. Because globally we have provided the global network for 450 telecom operators and we delivered more than 100 million smart phones every year, you are getting more and more chance to use the mobile phone produced by Huawei.
We have been here in Europe for 17 years and we have established 18 research centres on different countries, we invested a lot into a research and development here in to an ICT technology and in the past ten or more years, we actively work with telco operators in all the countries in the Europe to deploy the digital infrastructure like the 3G or 4G wireless technology and we are now ready for the pilot of the 5G technology in the market. We are also closely working with industry peers to participate the ongoing digitalisation process in all vertical industry because we observed that the industry of digitalisation has been a global chance(?) and it is speeding up very, very fast.
We have been a very important stakeholders of the ICT eco system here in Europe. From our perspective, we do have some observation and recommendations on how we are going to speed up the progress of the digital transformation here in Europe.
We are happy to see that EU has already established very visionary strategy and solid framework policies for its digital agenda.
For example: The Digital Single Market Strategy, the Horizon 2020 action plan, the Industry 4.0 and as well Next generation initiatives. All this has already given us a clear guidance from business perspective, on where we should focus our investment, from the research and development and where we should spend more effort to promote the application of the emerging ICT technologies and that is very helpful.
In the same time, we believe there are still some room to improve for the digital transformation including building the strongest digital infrastructure and invest more on not only technology but people and skills.
Today we will focus on the specific area. I will take this opportunity to talk about the broadband network, because I believe that the broadband network here in Europe will be a key enabler for any digital innovation in the future. EU has achieved a tremendous progress on broadband network development.
However, there is still room to improve. Particularly in terms of the network performance and network coverage. For example, according to the EU report on digital progress the 30 Mbps broadband network coverage is around 76% in Europe. However, the number in the rural area is just of 40 %. This is a big gap. This is a problem for further digital transformation.

In Huawei, we have identified some key actions that need to be taken to better develop the broadband network here in Europe:

  • The first is to greatly enhance the broadband coverage, in particular in the rural area because we believe that eventually the broadband network will provide us a ubiquitous platform. Ubiquitous platform for the whole society to help us to get everything and every people connected. Because the broadband network will be foundation for us to build a fully connected world.
  • The second action is that we believe the development of the broadband should be an application driven process. So, the future broadband network should be able to meet the requirements for those emerging consumer applications and emerging industrial applications. For example, the high technician video 4K or 8K and automatic control. That means the future broadband network should be much, much faster than today. From our calculation, the future broadband network should be hundred times faster and fifty times more responsive than todays’ network. There is still a long way to go.
  • The third is that we believe that broadband development should be driven by the technology. Here in Europe we identify the 5G the all optical network and the Internet of Things the IoT, as a top rate enabling technology for the further digital transformation, because those technologies will be able to meet the requirements for faster speed, lower latency and massive connectivity.

The last point I would like to raise is about the policy. The broadband requires massive investment. From the report on the Eu, the Eu needs a total investment of 500 billion euros to meet this objective for connectivity for the year of 2025. However, there is still a short of 155 billion euros and this is a big gap. We believe that supportive policies will help you achieve a more long-term investment from the power sectors. For example, if the policies can encourage content and application providers to share the benefit of success with the infrastructure operators. That will be a big step forward to achieve a more long-term investment.

In summary, the broadband will be a key enabler for the digital agenda here in Europe and a key enabler for the digital transformation in the future.
Better network performance, bigger network coverage, innovative technologies and supportive policies will be very much helpful to make the broadband as a solid foundation for the development of the next generation of Internet and at Huawei I say as a stakeholder of the whole ICT system here in Europe, we are very excited to be part of this progress.
Thank you very much.

Opening Session – Kathryn C. Brown

Kathryn C. Brown, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Internet Society.


Thank you for inviting me across the other part of the ocean, I know it is been rough in last couple of weeks.
Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen and esteemed colleagues and friends and thank you President Bonvicini for this wonderful invitation to speak.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Internet Society who have been advocating for an open, secure and trusted internet that benefits everyone, everywhere.
The Internet Society was founded in 1992 by Bob Kahn and Vint Cerf who believe that society would emerge from the idea that is the Internet and so it did.
Fast forward these 25 years we are in what Thomas Friedman in his newest book “Thank you for being late” calls the age of the acceleration. He posits that three largest forces on our planet: technology, globalisation and climate change are all accelerating at once and as a result as you have all recognised here, many aspects of our society were places in geopolitics, our being reshaped and need to be reimagined.
Friedman weaves this history of the convergence of supercomputing, fibre broadband, mobility, sensor technology and massive data analytics with the network technology of the internet. To describe a world today with the rate of change and the acceleration of the rate of change, both increased at the same time. And where the slower rate at which the human beings have adapted and are able to adapt, has created the current anxiety.
Even as the opportunities of the Internet Age have begun ever so more apparent, the rate of change has some shouting: “Stop the world, I just want to get off”.
There are those who just wish to turn the clock back, some that are actively trying to do so, but honestly, it is so impossible to do it.
Everywhere in our globally connected world, change is marching forward at an accelerated rate. In Africa, the benefits that are sawing grain now in Western economies, are starting to pay dividends. In my meeting in Nairobi in this past week, there was a sense of hope, most especially among the young people whose future appears radically different than it did 5 years ago.
An Important side note: people under thirty make the 50% of the African continent. Yet even with the sense of youthful exuberance, one can fear amongst various governments. Like those here in the West, they are in the midst of disruptions to establish culture, politics, economies and ways of working.
There and here the fear has led to calls to shut the borders, build walls, put the internet over tight government control and even to shut it down.
The Internet Society has recently highlighted the high economic in human cost in internet shootdowns pointing out that unilateral, technical measures are really appropriate tools to fix political, social of legal issues.
Even those of us who urgently advised that fear must not win out against hope know however, that when it comes to our individual and collective safety and security, just saying no to these interventions is not enough. Hope alone is not strategy. It will not deter the evils of terrorism and hate, criminality and fraud. But neither will fear.
Encryption is the current highly relevant topic here in Europe that is part of this conundrum. In Europe, interestingly and accordingly to EUROSTAT 84% of EU 28 uses the internet once a day and because the EU has been the Worlds’ guardian of user’s personal privacy, we have good data showing that upwards of 70% of internet users in the EU provides of some kind of personal information online.
Given the focus of user privacy by the EU it is perhaps not a coincidence that according to Cisco, Western Europe followed by Central and then Eastern Europe, lead all other regions in the number of secure internet servers that conduct encrypted transactions over the internet.
As with many things, technology designed for legitimate of even laudatory reasons, can be exploited by those with nefarious intent. Thus, we hear what sounds like a logical call to do a wave with these safe places for terrorists. But it’s quite evident that encrypted technologies protect the civil freedoms of many.
Indeed, over two thirds (2/3) traffic unfixed access networks in Europe are already encrypted.
I have some deep empathy for politicians who are facing hard, urgent problems, but who don’t have the proper tools to deal with them.
The encryption quandary is like some many others in our changed world. Do we have embraced positive change? But we are not prepared for the inevitable negative side effects of that change.
Our toolbox has not been updated. So, we reach for the solutions we know; shut it down, build in, lock step break, regulate it.
But in our new changed world I find myself violently agreeing with VP Timmermans – we need new tools.

And how do we address this solutions gap?
Again, how others have said in this room, we start by recognizing our fundamental values. I was heartened on the other side of the Atlantic last week when European council president Donald Tusk (?) said that the greatest task today is the consolidation of the whole free world around values, not just interests. Values and principles first. Of course, he is right. You are right.
Transactional solutions may be temporarily satisfying, but in the long term, unsustainable are worst. Quick fixes may exacerbate the very problem one is attempting to solve. Europe has been a steadfast champion of the principles of the Internet for over 25 years.
Upholding the values of openness, global connectiveness, trustworthiness, transparency and inclusion and it is against these values that we should be seeking a new policy direction.
I have the notion that the new tools needed to solve the problems of the next 10 years can be found in the innovations of the last 10 years.
Let’s ask ourselves how can a supercomputing power of sensor technology, big data analytics and high speed connectivity that have we created, help with the very disruption we have caused? And how can a methodology of Internet innovation, creativity, cooperation and collaboration shapes sustainable solutions?
The EU has called for multistakeholder processes and procedures to develop internet policy for over 10 years and yet we have not reformed of how government governs in the digital age.
The European is perhaps, in an unexpected position in in this extraordinary year of 2017 to take the lead on making good on the promise of the new governance model.
Let’s talk for a moment about who would be your partners:
The technologists among us, who helped designed those applications that we need to address change. While this Summit agenda points out to the new technologies that disrupt how we work, govern ourselves and blur ethics online and offline, I might prefer to tilt the lens a little and see these technologies as tools for innovation and creation. Creation of the new way of governing. We might use the technique of the internet standards organisation to inject a bias for action and agility. Rough concerns, running code.
Earlier today someone mentioned this, do we honestly need one rule, one law that is to last forever? When change is moving so fast? Can we not experiment and find structures that will allow us to have norms and yet, have agility?

At the table, in addition to the technologist, must be civil society. They will legitimately and passionately insist that human rights principles must shape the guardrails that insure that new solutions enhance and not harm our right as citizens.

Experts from the areas of the economy that are now being changed by the internet; education, medicine, agriculture, banking, transportation and more will want the place at the table.

And surely, the private sector remains the engine of the economic growth and innovation and without it, frankly we would indeed still be living in the 1950. Business needs to be in the room.

And finally, in this fraud times when freedom and security and war and peace are ever so close to the surface of so many of our anxieties, advocates for the adherence to the rule of law, established international codes of behaviour must have a clear voice.

All of these players need to come forward each and every one of them with the new commitment to the actual problem solving, that will require learning a demonstrating some new skills, substituting for instance their lobbing profanes(?) for understanding and willingness to collaborate, to form consensus.
There is a lot to do and governments feel the burden of the future on your shoulders. But we need to acknowledge that when things are moving so fast, governments do not have the complexed knowledge, base, experience or wisdom.
Indeed, the solutions to the changes occurring in our society may not be at all obvious because we have not yet done the work to fully adapt to our current circumstances. We need an entirely different mindset.
We actually have to move from managing disruption to the things as they are, to inventing new frameworks for anticipating and managing the way things will be. And to do that, the internet way requires that the discussions, the decision-making enforcement be inclusive and multi-stakeholder.
As the working sessions progress over the day tomorrow, I hope the conversations can quickly move from our anxious lament that disruption and chaos is our destiny, to an exploration of how tyo use tools of the digital age to reboot the relationship between the governing and the government. We must do so if we are to reap the benefits of the greatest technological advances in history.
For all the people of the Earth.
Thank you.

Opening Session – Markku Makkula

Markku Makkula, President of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR).


Thank you thank you very much.  Ladies and gentlemen, I want to first thank the organizers for inviting us to contribute here and now.

When I am speaking on behalf of all the cities and regions in Europe, since we are the
committee of the regions, we are the official body for representing practically 350 mayors
and regional presidents and councillors from all parts of Europe.
To add to that another 350 of our alternates who as well were allowed to participate. We normally organize our plenary meetings 6 times a year, here at the premises of the European Parliament and bringing the voice as the assembly of the cities and regions who are more like the bottom-up
Let me link this starting point with what Andrus Ansip said in his beginning about Tim Bernas Lee. Ansip went back to 1989 on this important memo of Tim’s. Actually, it was a after that I was elected the president of our city council and one of my first things were to invite some 20 people who I knew were being innovators of the future, inventors of the future. I invited them to a joint meeting to talk about how we could form an internet society in my city.  The lesson that I learned was that half of the people that I invited were young school children from 14 to 18 year olds. And they were eager to start whenever on that.
I was at that time working as the director of lifelong learning Institute at our University of Technology. So, we have the internet access, I was able to provide people with the internet addresses – organizing this kind of initiative, inviting these school children and their teachers as well to join us in making new things to happen. Kind of visualizing what this can mean. Again, there was strong support – a kind of enabling factor from some of the political decision makers including the minister of Education in Finland – madam Uosukainen – who later became the first woman speaker of the Parliament in Finland – she was a strong promoter of this movement.
We started in a few years’ time, so we had hundreds of active users of that internet address – free net Finland –  where we really participated in Tele Olympic Global activities, we had some of our schools collaborating with NASA, taking a space odyssey through this internet and so on. What I learned from that, was that we needed to do some kind of a bench learning process. To look where the other key innovators aren’t and try doing that. Try to do something better. Something that encourages people to do more. And I have used that ever since as an example that if you rely on the young generations to – what Mr. Timmermans was referring to – this first internet Society.
Allowing those born after 89 – those who were not even at school yet, but in the kindergarten age –  to show what they can do with computers, how they play the Civilization game and learned
their the role of libraries. What civilization really means. What you can do when you have different options in front of you. 

This is what we have actually been doing very much today with our cities and regions, challenging them to operate in this globalized digital economy, tackling the demographic dynamics and issues, even what we are having – the big societal challenges. 

We regularly now, in the last couple of years been calling for forerunners, stating it even in our official opinions, which we address to the parliament and to the commission. We need more and more of these forerunners, actors, but we have stated that every city or every region can be a pioneer. 
They can do something that they have not done in the past, and others can learn from that. But then we need to encourage more European partnerships. 
Partnerships that nowadays are coming through the smart specialization strategy. Every region in Europe has to find their own spearhead, based on Smart specialization or the Innovative approach for tackling these societal challenges or using, as we stated, this mass specialization.

It is above all an economic transformation agenda, where the policymakers needs to take a strong role to act and encourage their own region to be more operating. On the only policy making
base robust evidence provided by scientists and used in the right political, economic and
social context, that current is a better response to these societal challenges – they can,
through this meet citizens needs locally. 

That is why we, with our 5-year priorities, which approved a plenary two years ago, we started our first priority: the fresh Economic Development. Creating sustainable growth, creating new jobs, we started that with the words bottom-up approach.
Meaning with that, that we have defined three different key instrumental chains of priorities. The first one was this entrepreneurial mindset, we need more of that in Europe. With all generations. But especially we can learn a lot from the youth. 

The second was then the digital single market, or as we have said, that it needs to be as soon as possible, a fully functioning digital single Market. On that, we are doing a lot with DG CONNECT, with Vice-president Ansip and the others. 

The third was this mass specialization, so that we can have more partnership. We can use the latest knowledge, best experiences, best practices and start sharing more of this collaboration mentality and doing more things together. Creating critical mass. Not only locally but through this network.
This is something that when now we are looking for – after 2020 -set financial frame as well. We are very strongly stressing that we need cohesion policy. Of course, we need that for every region – and funding for that. 
But it is targeted especially for this Regional partnership. So that we can do more together, using the
best knowledge available. And that is very much evidence based knowledge. And on that –
we have challenged our members last spring, when I openly called for that I would need some 20, 30, 50 stories as our members, to tell your story on what way, how your own city or region is a forerunner as a regional innovation ecosystem. 
Encouraging that the whole ecosystem thinking. Because those ecosystems are integrating what we have in the research program so the scientific excellence, industrial leadership and the society innovation.
Integrating these to work more together. And on this ecosystem thinking, on that we have
got and published – as a report – this Regional Innovation ecosystem.
You can find that from our website – going to that and read those – it is interesting to see, because we gave them a frame: authors, our mayors, regional presidents – we gave them a frame and asked
them specially to highlight what are the new elements, how they organize their local policy collaboration – what is the policy model, what is the collaboration model –
and then this European partnership model as well.
And on that, we have created quite a lot of positive strong feedback with the mayor of Amsterdam talking about inclusiveness. That again, is strongly linked to this open Society, open innovation – using the modern technologies, getting citizens much stronger on board and creating their own
The mayor of Gdansk in Poland, Paweł Adamowicz wrote about how they are using digitalization in renewing their own city processes. The role of cities is really changing a lot, we can today say that what is one of the major targets with this level is really that we need citizens to be catalysts of this change.

This digital future. Building and seeing the city as a platform – this platform economy is coming strongly. It is not only for certain businesses, like Uber or so on, but it is really that cities openly changing the mentality so that the services are provided partly by the citizens themselves partly by the third sector or business organizations small or large – and their combinations. 
The city itself is kind of developing these concepts and processes so that they can be created in a different way, positively competing with each other. That makes a lot of sense through this so that we can really create a lot.

Mr. Hu stressed the crucial role of broadband and that is something that with Mr. Ansip we are working on, this kind of broadband platform so that we can encourage what are the new developments needed. Not only in financing investments but how that can be created. I strongly believe that it is the digitalization – we have now cross the level that we can really have this new development in our active use. 

Thank you very much.

Opening Session – Olivier Dumon

Olivier Dumon, Managing Director for Research Products, Elsevier.


Thank you, Mr. Chairman, thank you President Baracchi for inviting me, thank you all for being here. I wanted to take the opportunity to share with you what we are building at the Elsevier and why. I think it is relevant to this debate about the next generation of the internet so I have prepared some slides that I wanted to share with if that is ok.
As the slides are coming up hopefully in a few seconds I wanted maybe…
I think the slides are coming up right now. Sorry about that. Just making sure.
So maybe as a pre-amble – prior to joining Elsevier a few years ago I was running the search engine of eBay the marketplace which at that time was the fifth largest search engine in the world with four-hundred fifty million (450’000’000) queries a day and over the years I have developed some understanding of information systems and what is going on so that is what I wanted to bring to the discussion today. Maybe a quick word about research communities – because this is what we do at Elsevier – we’re trying to help research information. Research communities exchange information and the way research communities thrive is by exchanging information.
And what we have found is that researchers spend up to a quarter of their time researching existing information. You know this phrase: “building on the shoulders of giants?” It’s actually true, right? There is no such thing as new knowledge.
People come up with new knowledge by taking existing knowledge associating ideas among themselves and coming up – by associating ideas – with new knowledge. And this is what this chart is trying to say. So, I am a member of a community, my community is computer science. And I do research – of several patents myself. And when I have something that is presumably of interest I want to share it with the world. And then I decide the way of sharing that knowledge could be – we would want to believe at Elsevier – via a drawn article but in my community, it’s mostly via a conference. It could be via writing a book chapter, it could be via writing a blog post or anything else of course.

So, if Information exchange is at the centre of knowledge creation, of course, in research communities. If I move to the next slide and talk a little bit about has happened in the previous change in the internet. We went from the search era on the internet to the network era. What defined the search era of course is google right? You and I, when we wanted to search for information we would go to a search engine and try to retrieve or come up with the most intelligent query or request and try to come up with the best information to answer our intent.

In the new world, what defines me as an internet user is no more the information that I’ve posted but my tribe. My network. Who I am connected with. If I am connected to Stephane here in the first row what connects me, what defines me is no longer what I post on my wall but of course the fact that in some cases I like or do not like and I abstain from reacting to what Stephane is posting on his wall, right? So again, what defines me in the new internet is my tribe.

In the next generation internet which is the topic of today. I think what will define us is the convergence that several of the speakers have talked about today. The fact that the digital world and the physical world are gonna converge and Im going to give you some examples of that, right? If you think about your digital personality you have one professional identity on LinkedIn for some of us. You have one personal Identity maybe on Facebook for example. As a researcher, I have several profiles – up to ten profiles which are my digital identities. And today my digital identities are quite separated from myself, as a person. My belief is that those digital identities and my personal identity eventually will converge. One element of proof – it’s meant as a joke – when I look at my fifteen-year-old, right? And how much trouble she gets to sleep when one of her Snapchat stories is not being liked as much she wanted, that tells me that her digital life is having an influence on her physical life. And in that case, she cannot even sleep. So more seriously.

We are becoming cyborgs. The relationship that were having with our phones is incredible and someday we will merge with our phones that is hard to envision today. So, when you ask people under 20 how they would live without a phone for two days they react very strongly and they say they can’t. They cannot live without a phone.
On average we check our phones every ten minutes – and that’s how addicted we have become to this, right? If I move on to the next slide.

Let me tell you a little bit more of what we are building as an example of what is happening to the Internet. In the nineties – in the mid-nineties what happened is that research articles became digital objects. And it was a very big revolution at the time people talked about the P2E – the print to electronic revolution at the time. Very soon after that, people – some very smart people – had the intuition that if normally can we make articles digital objects, which we should extract knowledge by building an understanding of relationships between research articles as digital objects. And that’s what people called the citation graph. Relating articles as an entity to other articles, by people referring to one another, as you remember from our previous slide.

We want to link an idea – a novel idea – a research article to the founding that came to it – the award or grant, the research article that was published, the lab that published it, the researchers that were involved but actually the patent that was issued as a result, the drug that was eventually invented and potentially the social impact that this drug had or the media mentions that this invention had. We’re going to make links between the different research entities. There are about thirty-nine research entities in the *inaudible (1:52:28) of research. We’re going to link all those entities together. So that’s what we are working on as we speak.
The next generation of what we are working with as we speak, is what I call the knowledge graph. We are going to deconstruct the article as an object and we are going to go back to the assertion level. In fact, if you think about an article – it’s a pdf object – a digital object. What’s way more important is to understand the assertions – what is really the novel ideas in this article. And what we want to do is to build a knowledge graph within the article. Relate the core researchers to the data models – the researched data that led to the method section, the people that were involved, so we are going to go from 39 of research entities to millions of research entities and we want to eventually connect all the assertions to one another and that’s what I think will define the next generation internet if you move on – I’m pressed on time – to the next slide. This is how it looks like.

Relating – in this graph here the nodes are people and we are connecting people so in this graph we are going to make this graph live in a few months you will be able as a researcher to position yourself in the map of research. In seeing how you can connect to other people leveraging the co/author of the graph – the people you have co-authored it with, the citation graphs the people you cited and people who cited you and eventually again the next level is linking you as an inventor of new knowledge to the related assertions that you connected with in the knowledge map of research.

And the final and last thought that I would share with you is that nothing I described earlier would be possible without user privacy and trust. Who can we trust with our data? As a researcher, who can I trust with my data? As a citizen, it’s obvious to all of us that everything you have done today. From waking up in the morning to taking breakfast to taking a shower eventually to taking the train, landing here, and everything has been recorded digitally – everything you do. This speech that I’m making is will be recorded. Everything we do now is recorded. We have data about everything.
For example – let me give you an example – all the steps I’ve taken today are recorded in my phone, for example. The food I’ve taken today was recorded somewhere in the bill of the restaurant I’ve paid when I’ve had lunch, right? All that could be available to a health provider. For what purpose? Those are the questions that the next generation of the internet are raising for us and again, my keyword, Robert, would be trust. That’s my keyword.
Generation of the internet are raising for us and again, my keyword, Robert, would be trust. That’s my keyword.