The following section presents an overview of existing European Platforms that focus on BD and/or AI.
AI Watch is an initiative of the European Commission (EC) jointly developed by the EC joint Research Centre (JRC) and the Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT). The aim of AI Watch is to monitor the industrial, technological and research capacity, as well as the policy initiatives in the Member States, together with the uptake and technical developments of Artificial Intelligence and its impact in the economy, society and public services. Further, AI Watch provides a number of analyses necessary to monitor and facilitate the implementation of the European Strategy for AI.
The H2020 project brings the AI stakeholders and AI resources together in one dedicated place, overcoming fragmentation, so that AI-based innovations (research, products, solutions) will be accelerated. The AI4EU Platform acts as the one-stop-shop for anyone looking for AI knowledge, technology, services, software, and experts. AI4EU will function as European AI market driver, offering a critical mass of resources, community networking effects, and rapid development and growth.
The AI4CITIES project which is based on public procurement for innovation approach to get right technologies for local public issues. In particular the project aims at accelerating carbon neutrality through AI based solutions dealing with mobility and energy. Selected cities (as Helsinki, Amsterdam, Paris etc..) are going through a Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) to find solutions to make their mobility and energy domains more carbon neutral. In the 2nd phase of the project, ten Suppliers working on Energy solutions and ten working on mobility solutions will be developing first prototypes of the designs created in the first stage of the project.
CEF Big Data Test Infrastructure (BDTI) provides virtual environments that are built based on a mix of mature open source and off-the-shelf tools and technologies. The building block can be used to experiment with big data sources and models and test concepts and develop pilot projects on big data in a virtual environment. Each of these environments are based on a template that supports one or more use cases. These templates can be deployed, launched and managed as separate software environments. Specifically, the Big Data Test Infrastructure provides a set of data and analytics services, from infrastructure, tools and stakeholder onboarding services, allowing European public organisations to experiment with Big Data technologies and move towards data-driven decision making. The platform will be no longer updated and a new platform will be provided in the near future.
European AI Alliance
The European AI Alliance is a multistakeholder forum for engaging in a broad and open discussion of all aspects of AI development and its impact on the economy and society. It is steered by the High-Level Expert Group on AI (AI HLEG), which consists of 52 experts who have been selected by the Commission for this task, which includes the definition of a framework for trustworthy AI.
European Data Portal
The portal provides access to open data from international, EU, national, regional, local and geo data portals. It replaces the EU Open Data Portal and the European Data Portal. The portal addresses the whole data value chain, from data publishing to data reuse. Going beyond collecting metadata (data about data), the strategic objective of the portal is to improve accessibility and increase the value of open data. Users can use and reuse these data for commercial or non-commercial purposes. Aim of the portal is to provide easy access to data, free of charge, so that they are put to innovative use, thus unlocking their economic potential. The portal is also designed to make the EU institutions and other bodies more open and accountable.
JOINUP is a platform created by the European Commission and funded by the ISA2 Programme. It was established to share and reuse interoperability solutions for public administrations, businesses and citizens.it aims to become a one-stop-shop for interoperability solutions. An interesting study depicted in the platform is "Data Analytics for Member States and Citizens.", which explores the governance, technological and policy application aspect of big data in public administration, through a set of case studies and policy recommendations in support of the European Commission data strategy.
Living-in.EU is a political declaration to promote digital solutions throughout cities. It promotes smart mobility, sustainability, citizen participation. The political declaration has been signed currently by the Majors of 60 cities and regions, and it has become a reference tool for the alignment of strategies in the development of digital tools and skills for cities, including the use of AI-related solutions.
Typologies of Platforms and Services
On a European level, it was possible to identify six main typologies of platforms and services:
In this category belong platforms that provide access to catalogues of data, of solutions, of specific services or list research and papers. Here information is catalogued according to specific criteria and a search engine allows users to search the catalogue. Some of these platforms aim to become a one-stop-shop for users looking into specific knowledge, data and services around BD and AI (e.g. JoinUp, AI4EU, data.europa.eu)
This typology includes platforms that provide virtual environment that can be used to experiment with BD sources and models or AI solution and design methods (e.g. CEF Big Data Test Infrastructure; AI4EU)
Within this typology, belong different initiatives that aim to monitor research and progress in industrial, technological and policy contexts. Platforms in this area collect information, studies, solutions and applications that can be used as basis for policy making or to make informed decision on the use of these technologies (e.g. AI Watch, Living-in.EU)
This category includes platforms that, in addition to information, also offer opportunities for participation and discussion between final users. In some cases the forum function is an additional resource of the platform, in other it aims to achieve collaboration opportunities among stakeholders (e.g. AI Alliance; Living in EU)
This category is made up of platforms that provide real opportunities for capacity building by offering free training, webinars and resources to deepen knowledge in the field of BD or AI to interested users (e.g. data.europa.eu)
In this last category, belong a new wave of platforms often created by European projects, which focus on an open innovation methodology to find solutions for common challenges. The challenge-approach is often translated in open call where interested parties can apply to provide concrete solutions for challenges previously identified by public actors or consortia of stakeholders. In some cases, the open calls are linked to innovation procurement leading the way for public administration to became the first users of innovation thus opening the market for them (e.g. AI4cities)