Once again Europe has stated
its role as a leader and driver of the Information Society, and
it did so during a major conference entitled "eBusiness
and eWork 2001 (e2001)" held at the Telecom Italia Lab Future
Centre in Venice from the 17th to the 19th of October.
e-2001, the conference for
research and development projects in Key Action II of the IST
Programme, provided an opportunity for projects funded by Key
Action II to publish their results, thus giving delegates an
overview of the state-of-the-art of Information Technology in
Europe. The conference was attended by nearly 500 delegates,
coming from all over the world. Key Action II of the IST Programme
supports projects in the area of New Methods of Work and Electronic
"European industry must
continue to be at the forefront of developing new technologies,
building on its strengths. Industry must also acknowledge the
value of the business opportunities coming from the Internet."
This is the message given at the opening of the conference by
Rosalie Zobel, Director of the European Commission responsible
for Key Action II.
During her speech, Dr Zobel
said that the Internet had added a new dimension to competitive
business and so Europe must be at the forefront of developing
new technologies. She was pleased that the eBusiness and eWork
2001 conference provided an introduction to, and preparation
for, the European Commission's forthcoming support under Framework
Key Action II aims at showing
how emerging digital technologies in eWork, eBusiness and eCommerce
are generating exciting research opportunities and new business
ideas. Dr Zobel also presented Key Action II achievements in
2001, and the 2002 work programme. She also invited delegates
to attend the next conference in the series which will be held
All European Governments have
confirmed their wish to foster access to the Information Society
for its citizens and encourage the use of the Internet in developing
business. This point further was stressed by Mr Giulio De Petra,
- General Director of the Office for Informatic and Telecommunication
Networks Development for Public Administrations, Italian Ministry
of Innovation and Technology, in his speech.
De Petra praised the European
Commission's Key Action II initiative and welcomed the presence
of some of the main players within the world of new technologies,
pointing out that the work they were doing was crucial to Europe's
future economic position. De Petra presented the Italian Policy
on IST and highlighted new technologies' contribution to the
process of strengthening the link between Italy and Europe.
The conference and exhibition
was attended by a large number of delegates coming from leading
technology companies operating in Europe. The opening session
was hosted by Roberto Saracco, Director of Future Centre San
Salvador, Telecom Italia Lab, who introduced Robert Lloyd, Vice
President Cisco; Stefan Pilotti, Head of Corporate Planning Canon
Europe; Professor Thomas Gulledge, George Mason University, Enterprise
Engineering Laboratory; and Simon Dyson, IBM UK.
The plenary sessions saw European Parliament and European Commission
representatives discuss legal aspects and policy topics.
Roberto Saracco, Director of
Future Centre San Salvador, Telecom Italia Lab, focussed his
speech on the ongoing transformation of the concept of buying,
as well as on the need of leveraging the potential of the network
for consumers to become providers. He also highlighted emerging
trends as well as the stumbling blocks.
Robert Lloyd, President of
Europe Middle East and Africa, Cisco Systems, examined the maturing
of a marketplace that is coming to accept the value that the
Internet can bring to companies and presented the results of
a recent study that Gartner undertook with Cisco Systems. The
study predicts that the Internet Economy in Europe will grow
from $53 billion in 1999 to $1.2 trillion only five years later.
Stefan Pilotti, Head of Corporate
Planning, Canon Europe, presented the process undergone by Canon
Europe when it was decided to change the company's image using
e-business to drive the change.
Thomas Gulledge, George Mason
University, Enterprise Engineering Laboratory, discussed a successful
approach for transferring complex eBusiness technologies to Asia
to support the development of an aerospace eHub. He also highlighted
that effective implementation of such projects requires that
the transferring and receiving organisations be integrated as
a single team.
Simon Dyson, IBM UK, dealt
with the potential of mobile e-business, whose competitive edge
will be strengthened if all organisations have strategies in
place for b2e (business to employee) interactions, the actual
starting place for the real, extended application of mobile e-business.
Parallel technical session
within e 2001 described enabling technologies, highlighting results
and industrial potential. Apart from the conference sessions,
the three days programme included an exhibition covering research
projects, books, software and services. A matchmaking service
project assisted delegates with the location of partners for
future project proposals, future research activities and marketing
A spokesperson for the European
Commission claimed that: "e2001 is one of the most important
European conferences for advanced Internet-related technologies.
The conference and exhibition demonstrated the latest European
initiatives in this exciting and economically vital area. The
European Commission sought papers that lie within the scope of
eBusiness and eWork from leading-edge researchers so that e2001
could provide an early indication of enabling technologies and
their industrial applications."
The final programme shows that
187 papers were given over the three days in Venice. Topics covered
included supply chain management, eLearning, intelligent networks,
Internet applications, trust, security and legal issues. A new
addition to the conference was the specially created discussion
sessions on enabling technologies such as mobility, on-line payment
systems and XML.
e2001 was the conference for
RTD projects in Key Action II of the IST Programme, who were
also the primary sponsors of e2001. Major sponsors were Telecom
Italia, Canon Europe and InfoCamere.