Workshop report: Privacy and trust: trends in experiments in EU-US research and innovation

The NGI Policy Summit hosted a series of policy-in-practice workshops, and below is a report of the session held by NGI Atlantic.

The NGI Policy Summit hosted a series of policy-in-practice workshops, and below is a report of the session held by NGI Atlantic, written by Sara Pittonet Gaiarin and Jim Clarke.

Bridging EU-US research on Next Generation Internet: about is one of the growing family of the Next Generation Internet (NGI) initiative’s Research and Innovation (RIA) projects, whose goal is to collectively build a human-centric internet based on the values held dear by European citizens, such as privacy, trust, fairness and inclusiveness. At the same time, the NGI initiative is designed to make sure that there are significant internationalisation activities, including collaborations between EU and United States’ NGI-related activities in order to generate major impacts at both a Pan-European and transatlantic level. Within the above backdrop, from January 2020 through June 2022, will fund 3rd party EU-based researchers and innovators in carrying out NGI-related experiments, in collaboration with US research teams, throughout regular open calls. In its first open call, running between 1st April and 29th May 2020, six projects have been selected for funding, in areas primary related to EU – US collaboration on privacy and trust enhancing technologies and decentralised data governance by leveraging AI, blockchain, 5G, big data and IoT technologies.

Trends in experiments in EU-US research and innovation

Organising a session during the NGI Policy Summit 2020 was an ideal opportunity to provide policymakers with an overview of the major trends and trajectories in EU – US research collaboration and context for NGI-related policy developments in the present and future. Three of the selected projects were given an opportunity to pitch their experiments, present their initial results and how these would contribute to ongoing policy dialogues in the EU and US.

Decentralized data governance

George C. Polyzos, Director, Mobile Multimedia Laboratory, Athens University of Economics and Business, presented the “Self-Certifying Names for Named Data Networking” project, whose solution builds on the emerging paradigm of Decentralized Identifiers (DIDs), a new form of self-sovereign identification under standardization by W3C in Name Data Networking (NDN). He was followed by Berat Senel, Research Engineer at PlanetLab Europe, EdgeNet, Laboratoire d’Informatique de Paris 6 (LIP6), who introduced the CacheCash Experiment, leveraging on the Content Delivery Network (CDN) technology that provides a service in which interested users run caches, and they are incentivised to participate by receiving a crypto-currency (Cachecoin) in exchange for serving content to other users.

Privacy and Trust Enabling Data Marketplace for Sustainable Supply Chains 

Moving to the privacy and trust topics, Tomaz Levak, Managing Director at Trace Labs Ltd. introduced the “Food Data Marketplace” (FDM) project, which is fostering new economic models for sustainable food supply chains based on data and employing privacy-by-design approach to enable farmers and cooperatives to regain control of their data, give it a price tag, and sell it to interested partners in the supply chain. Last but not least, the project also took the opportunity to showcase the Twinning Lab, an on-line space for researchers, innovators and start-ups to establish complementary partnerships with transatlantic actors to address NGI challenges, and to present their future activities and opportunities for the NGI communities.
The project also highlighted their 3rd Open Call , which will open on 1st December 2020.