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In the Call 2020, to be published in December 2020, two new and emerging research topics are addressed, namely Advanced Brain-Computer Interfaces for Novel Interactions and Towards Sustainable ICT.

The topics descriptions below are provided as draft only. The final descriptions will result from the CHIST-ERA Conference 2020 (September 29-30 and October 1). Open to any interested scientist, the Conference will bring together scientists and CHIST-ERA representatives in order to identify and formulate the most promising scientific and technological challenges. The conference website is available here.

Moreover, indications on the participating funding organisations are provided in the table below. CHIST-ERA being open to new funding partners, interested researchers from countries not listed below are encouraged to contact their national/regional funding organisation to express their interest. The definitive list of the participating funding organisations will be published in the official Call Announcement.


Topic 1. Advanced Brain-Computer Interfaces for Novel Interactions

Recently we have seen an explosion of brain-based technologies that capitalize on human capabilities to improve human-system interactions. Forerunners of this conception are brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), which have been largely focused on improving the quality of life for particular clinical populations such as paralyzed or “locked-in” patients. Near-term applications are primarily task-oriented and are targeted to overcome development obstacles. However, in the longer-term, a holistic approach to BCIs shall enable a range of task-oriented and opportunistic applications by leveraging pervasive technologies and advanced analytical approaches to sense and merge critical brain, behavioral, task, and environmental information. The objective of this topic is to consider BCIs for human-computer, human-to-human, or human-to-object interaction. Of particular interest are BCIs in Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, without verbal commands.

Application sectors: Healthcare, Telemedicine, Assisted Living, Education & Training, Entertainment & Gaming, Simulation, Cultural and Creative Industries, Advertising

Keywords: Human-machine interaction, brain-computer interface, augmented brain-computer interface, pervasive sensing and computing, collaboration, virtual reality, augmented reality, cyber-physical systems, cyber-human systems

Topic 2. Towards Sustainable ICT

The energy and resource footprint of ICT is rapidly increasing and is becoming a significant contributor to climate change and various kinds of pollution. At the same time, ICT is an ideal area where the entire technology involved may be rethought systemically. Sustainable ICT concerns all frugality aspects from computing hardware, over middleware and software, to networking and mobile computing, in an integrated manner. Novel and ambitious approaches are sought to design and build systems, software and protocols that minimise resource and energy usage as well as carbon footprint over their entire life cycle from resource extraction to end-of-life, and favour reusability, reparability and recycling. Reaching such a technology objective is likely to be insufficient on its own to keep the impact of ICT within the Earth system limits. Human factors should also be studied to allow rethinking jointly ICT and their usage, in particular minimise rebound effects, a traditional annihilator of many efficiency gains, and foster an environment-aware usage of ICT.

Application sectors: All application sectors of ICT

Keywords: ICT, carbon footprint, energy consumption, material footprint, life cycle analysis, environment-aware usage, frugality, sustainability

Anticipated list of participating national/regional funding organisations

Country Funding organisation Participation status Contact point 
Austria FFG Not considered
Austria FWF Not considered
Belgium F.R.S.-FNRS Considered
Belgium FWO Considered
Bulgaria BNSF Considered
Czech Republic TACR Considered
Estonia ETAg Not considered
Finland AKA Considered
France ANR Considered
Greece GSRT Not ocnsidered
Hungary NKFIH Considered
Ireland IRC Considered
Israel InnovationAuth Considered
Italy MIUR Not considered
Latvia VIAA Considered
Lithuania LMT Considered
Luxembourg FNR Considered
Poland NCN Considered
Portugal FCT Not considered
Québec (Canada) FRQNT Considered
Romania UEFISCDI Considered
Slovakia SAS Considered
Spain AEI Considered
Sweden VR TBA
Switzerland SNSF Considered
Turkey TÜBITAK Considered
United Kingdom UKRI Considered (topic 2)