Welcome to today’s Morning Brief. The Morning Brief newsletter is available to INESC staff and affiliated researchers upon subscription (weekly or daily), after creating an account in the Private Area of the HUB website, or those who wish to subscribe. To do so, click the log-in icon on the top-right corner of this website or go to the Morning Brief page and click the subscribe button.

In this Morning Brief, we open with the incredible news that the INESC Brussels HUB Summer Meeting 2022 is happening from the 20th to the 23rd of June and registrations are now open, registrations are also open for the 12th Lisbon Machine Learning School, The Guild of universities published a statement welcoming new health data regulation but urge EU to go further, the European Commission has announced five lighthouse projects to be financed across Europe for the New European Bauhaus, and more!  

Any comments or suggestions, hit me up with an email on teresa.carvalho@inesc.pt.

In today's Morning Brief:

In today’s Morning Brief:

INESC Brussels HUB Summer Meeting 2022

We are thrilled to announce that this year’s INESC Brussels HUB Summer Meeting will be taking place in Brussels and online from the 20th to the 23rd of June.

With a fascinating list of speakers and moderators, we will be discussing research careers and research assessment, the twin revolution as seen from the future, science-based innovation, science futures anticipation and science-based policy making. We will also be hosting a networking cocktail event in the INESC Brussels Hub HQ and a dinner discussion. With an illustrious speaker list and different events for all, this meeting will be a non-miss this summer.

Make sure to check out the various events and register here.


The 12th Lisbon Machine Learning School – LxMLS 2022

The Lisbon Machine Learning Summer School (LxMLS) takes place yearly at Instituto Superior Técnico (IST). LxMLS 2022 will be a 6-day event (24-29 July, 2022), scheduled to take place as an in-person event.

The school covers a range of machine learning topics, from theory to practice, that are important in solving natural language processing problems arising in different application areas. It is organized jointly by Instituto Superior Técnico (IST), a leading Engineering and Science school in Portugal, the Instituto de Telecomunicações, the Instituto de Engenharia de Sistemas e Computadores, Investigação e Desenvolvimento em Lisboa (INESC-ID), the Lisbon ELLIS Unit for Learning and Intelligent Systems (LUMLIS), Unbabel, and Zendesk.

Make sure to apply until May 15th here!


Universities welcome new health data regulation but urge EU to go further

The Guild of European Research-Intensive Universities says the EU can do more to make health data easily available to researchers, as it welcomes the proposal for the European Health Data Space. Revealed by the European Commission yesterday, the proposed regulation seeks to enable cross-border health data sharing and re-use of anonymised data for research. Today, health data rarely travels due to EU ’stringent data regulations and their differing interpretations in member states. 

One way the new health data rules could go a step further, the Guild suggests, is to enable patients to consent to have their data used for research purposes, including through choosing the degree of protection they desire. This could result in non-anonymised data being made available, making the data even more valuable for science.

“European science, and the development of new treatments, is held back by a plethora of national rules as well as different interpretations of GDPR requirements. We strongly support the development of a European Health Data Space, but urge the EU to go further,” said Jan Palmowski, secretary general of The Guild.

Read more here.


New European Bauhaus: Five lighthouse projects to be financed across Europe

Yesterday, the Commission announced the five selected projects for the €25 million call for the development of ‘lighthouse demonstrators’ of the New European Bauhaus (NEB). The Commission is currently negotiating grant agreements with the selected beneficiaries.

The projects will create more sustainable, inclusive, and beautiful spaces in locations across the EU and will involve citizens in the green transition at the local level.

President Ursula von der Leyen said: “I cannot wait to see these New European Bauhaus projects come to life. They will show how the future can look and bring the European Green Deal to our daily lives and living spaces. These projects should become the starting point for a European and worldwide network of New European Bauhaus projects.”

The five shortlisted projects will receive funding of approximately €5 million each to implement their plans in 11 Member States (Belgium, Czechia, Germany, Denmark, Greece, Croatia, Italy, Latvia, Netherlands, Slovenia, and Portugal), as well as in Norway and Turkey. They will deal with topics such as building renovation, circularity, arts, cultural heritage, education, smart cities, urban and rural regeneration and more.

Click here to read about the projects in detail.


Commission wants GDPR+ protection to facilitate health data revolution

According to EURACTIV, “Data protection, citizens’ rights, and digitalisation are at the forefront of the revolutionary European Health Data Space (EHDS) presented by the EU executive on Tuesday (3 May), according to involved stakeholders. The proposal intends to address the limited use of digital health data in the EU because of different standards among member states and the limited interoperability. “The framework that we have put together for the EHDS respects citizens and patients’ rights,” said health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides, highlighting how the trust component remains crucial for its uptake. Several digital health products are already available on our smartphones, including the EU’s COVID certificates and telehealth applications. “What we want to do now is accelerate that to other parts of the health system,” commented an EU official. For Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas, the EHDS represents “a milestone for our digital transformation, and the real revolution in European medical history” as “health data is the blood running through the veins in our healthcare systems.” “Every time that a proposal on data is presented, there’s lots of excitement around. But this is big. It’s important. It’s necessary. It’s innovative, and it comes at the right time,” he said.”.


Euronews OCEAN – Innovation in fisheries in Portugal

Despite fishermen’s best intentions, fishing can negatively affect the marine environment. In fact, one of the greatest threats to seabirds is that they accidentally get caught in fishing nets. Some 200,000 seabirds are killed in Europe through unintentional catching in fishing gear. But fishing gear is also causing damage when it’s no longer in active use. Abandoned, discarded or lost fishing gear litters the seafloor, trapping marine life and polluting the ocean with microplastics. Can technological innovation help reduce this harm? In this episode, we’ll meet Portuguese fishers and researchers looking for ways to modernise the sector — from a simple “scarecrow of the seas” preventing accidental bycatch of marine birds (EU-funded MedAves Pesca project) to high-tech underwater robots that rely on acoustic sensing and artificial intelligence to locate and retrieve lost fishing gears (EU-funded NETTAG project).

Watch the episode here.


EDMO 2022 Annual Conference

On 13 and 14 June the European Digital Media Observatory will hold its 2022 Annual Conference in Brussels. Reaching its second year of activities, this conference will be the opportunity to explore what the Observatory is doing and has done so far to better understand, detect, and tackle disinformation including in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic and of the current conflict in Ukraine.

During the one-and-a-half-day conference, key experts and stakeholders will contribute to explore a wide range of topics including disinformation around the Ukraine conflict and how to tackle it, the relation between neuroscience and disinformation, national and multinational efforts to strengthen media and information literacy, developments ahead of the revised Code of Practice on Disinformation and on access to data for research purposes.

Bringing together European and international media and policy practitioners, academics, fact-checkers, regulators, and members of civil society organizations, the event will also offer opportunities for networking activities and informal meetings.

Click here to register and to find more information about the programme.


‘Europe is never going to be capable of producing its own hydrogen in sufficient quantities’: EU climate chief

According to RechargeNews, “Europe’s future clean energy system will rely on imported green hydrogen, according to EU climate chief Frans Timmermans. “I strongly believe in green hydrogen as the driving force of our energy system of the future,” the European Commissioner for Climate Action told the European Parliament last week. “And I also strongly believe that Europe is never going to be capable to produce its own hydrogen in sufficient quantities.” Timmermans’ statement surprised some industry observers. “It’s quite incredible that we hear this from a high EU official,” one told Recharge. Even Timmermans, who is also the commission’s executive vice-president for the European Green Deal, acknowledges that the notion of Europe swapping reliance on imported fossil fuels — particularly from Russia — for reliance on imported green hydrogen is not politically palatable. “We can’t just wean ourselves from fossil fuels overnight, it’s simply impossible. We will need, in the interim, to diversify our energy supplies from many, many sources — as many as possible, frankly, so that we don’t become dependent too much on one source,” he said. “If around the Mediterranean, in the widest sense, we can create a diversified interdependence, which means that we all have a stake in this production, distribution, utilization of green hydrogen, this is the future, this is how you also create more stability in the geopolitical system. This is how you offer an enormous opportunity for the development of Africa — 600 million Africans who now have no access to energy will have access to electricity. “And at the same time, I was in Egypt and Turkey, of course we have complicated relations with those countries, but those are countries that are going to be producing renewable energy at quantities way beyond their own needs, so they will want to look for somewhere to put this excess.” This was no slip of the tongue for a commissioner who has previously called for Europe to be more independent, particularly when it comes to the local production of solar panels and electric-vehicle batteries.”.


CMU Portugal Visiting Students Program: Call for up to 8 visits to CMU in 2022

A Call for applications to the CMU Portugal Visiting Students Program is open between May 2nd and May 31st, 2022. The initiative is aimed at 8 research visits to Carnegie Mellon University in 2022 and completed by December 31st. The call is launched under the CMU Portugal Program and funded by Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (FCT).

The CMU Portugal Visiting Students Program will allow up to 8 talented masters and master’s students to immerse themselves in a research project at Carnegie Mellon. During 2 to 5 months, they have a chance to develop their knowledge and skills as researchers and explore new perspectives for graduate studies and career opportunities in cutting-edge ICT areas while being mentored by CMU’s leading faculty and researchers.

Candidates should read carefully the Call for Visiting Students Announcement and apply through the online application form available on the Admissions and Scholarships page.


DIGI-HE Workshop 2: Developing a high-performance digital education ecosystem – Institutional self-assessment

What is the future of digitally enhanced learning and teaching in post-Covid higher education? As institutions “get back to normal”, will it be relegated to an emergency tool or will it become fully mainstreamed and integrated into learning and teaching? In the wake of the pandemic, many institutions wish to take stock of the lessons learnt over the past two years, but how to carry out such an assessment and harness the results to establish a sustainable approach to digitally enhanced learning and teaching?

This workshop is the second of a three-part series aimed at supporting institutions in the assessment of their achievements and opportunities in digitally enhanced learning and teaching. Organised in partnership with the European Distance and E-learning Network (EDEN), it will share experiences in the use of self-assessment and self-assessment instruments for enhancing institutional approaches to digitally enhanced learning and teaching.  With a focus on the three topics of strategy and organisational culture, curriculum and assessment and international partnerships, which have been discussed under the DIGI-HE project, participants will exchange views on how they see their institutions developing in post-Covid times.

Free of charge and open to all EUA and EDEN members, the workshop will be of interest to higher education leaders responsible for learning and teaching as well as those working on the digital transformation of learning and teaching. Participants will actively contribute to the discussions and peer exchanges – a major source of inspiration and learning. Therefore, attendance is limited to 30 people, with a maximum of two participants per institution. Registration remains open until 6 May 2022.

More Articles