Monday, October 12, 2009

Europe - A Green Knowledge Society

A Green Knowledge Society - An ICT policy agenda to 2015 for Europe’s future knowledge society

First, ICT is bringing about a fundamental shift in our economic and social lives. For instance, relationships between producers and consumers in both public and private spheres become more interactive and multi-faceted, so that the consumer ceases to be just a passive recipient and becomes an active participant. There are enormous consequences for the ways in which we interact, our social organisation, the delivery of public services including how government interacts with citizens. This means we must be ever more aware of human and social aspects as they relate to ICT. The critical importance of this was recently highlighted by EU President Barroso, who recently called for ‘a Europe committed to the radical transformation towards a knowledge-based society’.

Second, we have reached a tipping point in the transition to a knowledge economy. The changes we have been experiencing can no longer be thought of as an evolution from the industrial past. Rather, the change is revolutionary. The enterprises that drive the knowledge economy and produce jobs and growth have to be more competitive, creative and innovative than ever before. It is crucial that Europe becomes a leading knowledge economy if it is to meet the social and economic aspirations of its citizens. Moreover, the current economic downturn emphasises an immediate objective for ICT policy, to be an element for economic recovery and strengthen the European economy. Commissioner Reding has highlighted this potential in recent speeches.

Third, the issue of climate change is the most important challenge of our time. ICT occupies a leading role in the fight against climate change, contributing to a sustainable low-carbon economy. Moreover a global lead in this domain could be an important new opportunity segment for Europe’s economy – a ‘Green New Deal’.

see also Visby Agenda

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