Some of the nearly 60,000 IEEE members in Europe are individually involved in European Union (EU) public affairs and in EU-funded research programs, where topics like education, energy, and Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) policies are discussed. However, as individuals they are not able to have the impact or visibility that they could have working through an international organization such as IEEE. The EPP allows members to develop and promote coordinated and consensus-based public policy position statements on these topics, and it gives IEEE a voice in Europe. The EPP seeks to empower IEEE members in Europe to have influence in Europe, as appropriate for Europe. This is performed by a combination of activities, such as the production of relevant technical statements and white papers. The topics have been selected based on the relevance to the current EU legislative process, the expertise in the group, and the potential impact on the topic.
Beginning in 2018, IEEE European members will be able to opt in to review and comment on draft public policy position statements.
Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), such as cancer and diabetes, impose a significant burden on societies and individuals. However, only approximately 3 % of the healthcare spending is used for prevention and health promotion in the OECD countries on average. At the same time, information and communications technology (ICT) is transforming healthcare. This whitepaper describes the multiplicity of ICT systems and applications that are available for NCD prevention and health promotion. As background and motivation, the whitepaper includes an introduction to NCDs, their risk factors, and prevention. This whitepaper has been written from the European perspective. However, most of the matters also apply to developed countries elsewhere. This whitepaper serves as the background information for the IEEE European Public Policy Committee position statement “ICT for the Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases and Health Promotion in Europe” adopted on 16 Jan. 2018.
The “Clean Energy for all Europeans” legislative package (also known as the Winter Package), includes a great number of legislative proposals that intend to drive the European energy system towards a very low carbon and very efficient one. Whereas the focus is in targets rather than technologies, it is clear that energy storage (ES) is, as stated in a study recently issued by the European Parliament Research Service, one of the top ten technologies that will drastically change our lives. The EPPC Working Group on Energy looks at this topic from an EU perspective and highlight the different areas where ES can play a significant role, such as grid operation and control, integration of RES in wholesale markets, ES systems installed by active customers, ES role in local communities, electromobility, and finally R&D issues. This position statement also includes a list of issues and recommendations organized around these areas.
In this position statement, we give a set of recommendations regarding the identified NCD prevention and health promotion related challenges for which we see ICT-based solutions. The recommendations are intended to promote and enhance the usage and effectiveness of ICT-based solutions in NCD prevention and health promotion. The domain is vast and multifaceted. In this position statement, we do not address the associated technical, legal, privacy, data protection and localization, public opinion, ethical, or other similar challenges. All these matters must be solved for healthcare ICT and eHealth systems in general. The recommendations in this position statement can be realized in the same frameworks or systems. However, the recommendation on data linkage may require specific attention in this regard.
About 50% of the final energy consumption in Europe is used for the heating needs of buildings, domestic hot water production, and heating in industrial processes. In addition, much of this supply comes from fossil fuels, meaning significant greenhouse gas emissions, as the heating sector alone causes about 38% of the overall EU emissions. Besides heating, in the last decade cooling has become a major factor in the share of energy consumption too, creating challenges for the electricity grid. Therefore, addressing the heating and cooling sectors is key to achieving the European climate goals, as well as increasing concerns with regards to security of supply. The IEEE European Public Policy (EPP) would like to look at this topic from an EU perspective and highlight the challenges that Europe will face, as well as the opportunities that may arise by optimally deploying new technologies.
Today, the public is generally more concerned with the environmental impact of technology than in any period of the modern industrial economy. The use of electricity to provide the energy to drive transportation is not a new idea: railways around the world have used electricity to drive trains and trams for many years. This was due to the nature of the railway, with defined routes allowing power to be routed effectively along the railway lines. The IEEE EPP, representing prominent European technologists, looks at this topic from an EU perspective and highlights the interests that electrification of transport can represent to current EU policies.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is quickly finding its way into the lives of people all across the world, thanks to the innovative work of scientists and technologists, many of whom are IEEE members. As AI becomes a greater part of our everyday lives, so does the discussion about managing risks and rewards. As more applications of AI are developed, IEEE members are leading the debate on how to build trust, prevent drastic failures, and integrate ethical considerations into the design of AI technologies. The IEEE European Public Policy (EPP) supports the vision that the major goal of AI applications is to create value that benefits people. This statement aims to facilitate the design of European AI policies.
The development of sustainable power and energy systems in Europe is essential for ensuring the competitiveness and long-term development of the European economy. This has been expressed in various policy measures such as the 2020 climate and energy package, the 2030 framework for climate and energy policies etc. The IEEE EPP, representing European technologists, willing to contribute to the public debate, has identified potential changes aiming at enhancing the research and development efforts that are required in order to develop sustainable power and energy systems and solutions in Europe.
Besides the predominant AC (Alternate Current) technology today, DC (Direct Current) will play an important role in the future of our electricity systems. At the transmission system level, HVDC (high-voltage direct current) grids will allow us to bring offshore wind energy onshore and will also serve as the basic transmission technology for the envisioned European “supergrid”; a key component in securing a stable European energy supply. At the end-user level, the European consumer would benefit from increased energy efficiency if DC technology is given full attention for the roll out and use in the creation of our future smart cities. The IEEE EPP, representing prominent European technologists, would like to highlight the interests that DC use can represent to comply with EU policies.
The European Commission and industry have taken a set of impactful initiatives specifically addressing the electronics sector at large. The IEEE EPP, while supporting these initiatives, makes 6 key focused recommendations. They deal with: advanced capabilities by semiconductor foundries and circuit design companies, high performance computing compilers and tools, tighter collaboration schemes for embedded electronics/ computing and communications with vehicle designers, increased focus on energy savings in the wireless 5G context, open source personalized data mining, and inclusion of standardization initiatives inside R&D programs.
Ubiquitous electronics (including computers, communications, and entertainment systems), the adoption of LED lighting, and the emergence of electric vehicles are prominent among trends that are increasing the demand for DC power. In homes and businesses, this demand is usually met using AC to DC converters for each product or application; typically, these converters are inefficient while operating, and often consume power when not in service. Reducing these inefficiencies in supply, while taking advantage of the fact that most of the electric power provided by renewable sources is generated as DC power, represents a major opportunity to address European goals and aspirations.
The IEEE EPP aims with this paper to contribute to the public debate and encourage the development of Smart Cities. The IEEE EPP believes that the European Commission (EC) should foster development of European Smart Cities by leveraging the research and technology know-how of its Member-States. At the same time, commercial and regulatory obstacles that could impede strategic developments and realization of wider economic and environmental benefits to its citizens should be removed.
Network Neutrality is a non?discriminatory principle for Internet traffic. It has been widely debated recently, with significant policy deliberations occurring around the world. The IEEE EPP would like to share its perspective on the development of the Telecoms Single Market Regulation, in which Network Neutrality is a key element.
The Parliament Magazine is an EU politics magazine covering the latest developments in EU politics, European Parliament news, opinions, and comments. The magazine is based upon contributions—both editorial and advertorial—from sitting members of the European Parliament, prominent European policymakers, NGOs, organizations, and other stakeholders on issues currently under discussion within the European institutions. IEEE has contributed in the past via its supplement articles on:
The following articles were published in The Institute- The IEEE News Source:
Marko Delimar, head of the IEEE European Public Policy, was interviewed by Karel Beckman, editor-in-chief at the Energy Post, on 6 November 2015 regarding the Initiative and related activities. Read the full interview.