Embedding digital into societal challenges

A conference on embedding digital solutions into the societal challenges of the current and next EU R&I programme, while showcasing Estonian scientists’ contributions in addressing emerging barriers.


This conference, which will take place in Brussels, aims to provide input towards policy discussions relevant to policymakers and decision-makers in the EU institutions, Member States, and stakeholders. It relates to some of the barriers to embedding digital solutions into the societal challenges posed by the EU research and innovation (R&I) framework programme Horizon 2020, and the next framework programme. Another aim is to showcase Estonian scientists’ and research-based enterprises’ contributions in addressing these obstacles. The conference will also be an opportunity to find partners for cooperation.

Background: EU science, research and innovation policy plays an important part in merging the physical and digital worlds by matching digital technologies with innovative solutions to societal challenges. Societal challenges are one of the key priorities of Horizon 2020 and the next framework programme. This priority focuses on areas like health, food, energy, transport, climate, and innovative and secure societies. Many solutions are already in place, but there are growing opportunities and challenges.

Structure: The welcome speech is followed by two policy panel discussions. Both panels are illustrated with two showcases of Estonian science. The topic of the first panel discussion is “Data as a key enabler for Europe’s future: Prerequisites for free movement of data.” The second panel discussion focuses on “Societal acceptance of digital solutions: Preconditions for implementation.”

Organisers: the Estonian Research Council and its Estonian Liaison Office for EU RTD in Brussels, the Permanent Representation of Estonia to the EU, the Ministry of Education and Research in Estonia, Science|Business and the Network of Universities from the Capitals of Europe (UNICA).

Target group: primarily policymakers and decision-makers at the EU institutions, including high officials from the European Commission, representatives of the relevant professional associations, R&I offices, attachés from Member States, representatives of universities, and others in the field.

Additional information on eu2017.ee website: https://www.eu2017.ee/cultural-events/embedding-digital-societal-challenges


Estonian Research Council

Estonian Research Council is a governmental foundation that was established to concentrate the funding of R&D and guarantee the better functioning of financing systems. More specifically, the Estonian Research Council awards research grants, represents Estonia at international organisations, supports and coordinates participation in international cooperation programmes, analyses research information and the impact of funding decisions, it helps to get young people attracted to science and technology and raises public awareness about science and its importance to society.