FuturICT – FET Flagship

Today, we know more about the universe than about our society. It’s time to use the power of information to explore social and economic life on Earth and discover options for a sustainable future. Together, we can manage the challenges of the 21st century, combining the best of all knowledge.

The ultimate goal of the FuturICT flagship project is to understand and manage complex, global, socially interactive systems, with a focus on sustainability and resilience. Revealing the hidden laws and processes underlying societies probably constitutes the most pressing scientific grand challenge of our century and is equally important for the development of novel robust, trustworthy and adaptive information and communication technologies (ICT), based on socially inspired paradigms.

We think that integrating ICT, Complexity Science and the Social Sciences will create a paradigm shift, facilitating a symbiotic co-evolution of ICT and society. Data from our complex globe-spanning ICT system will be leveraged to develop models of techno-socio-economic systems. In turn, insights from these models will inform the development of a new generation of socially adaptive, self-organized ICT systems.

Data from our complex globe-spanning ICT system will be leveraged to develop models of techno-socio-economic systems. In turn, insights from these models will inform the development of a new generation of socially adaptive, self-organized ICT systems.

FuturICT as a whole will act as a Knowledge Accelerator, turning massive data into knowledge and technological progress. The FuturICT Knowledge Accelerator is a previously unseen multidisciplinary international scientific endeavour with focus on techno-socio-economic-environmental systems.

 

In this way, FuturICT will create the scientific methods and ICT platforms needed to address planetary-scale challenges and opportunities in the 21st century. Specifically, FuturICT will build a sophisticated simulation, visualization and participation platform, called the Living Earth Platform. This platform will power Exploratories, to detect and mitigate crises, and Participatory Platforms, to support the decision-making of policy-makers, business people and citizens, and to facilitate a better social, economic and political participation.

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Download:  FuturICT Project Summary  Download:  FuturICT Project Outline

The FuturICT Proposal

With our knowledge of the universe, we have sent men to the moon. We know microscopic details of objects around us and within us. And yet we know relatively little about how our society works and how it reacts to changes brought upon it. Humankind is now facing serious crises for which we must develop new ways to tackle the global challenges of humanity in the 21st century. With connectivity between people rapidly increasing, we are now able to exploit information and communication technologies to achieve major breakthroughs that go beyond the step-wise improvements in other areas.It is thus timely to create an ICT (Information and Communication Technology) Flagship to explore social life on Earth, and everything it relates to, in the same way that we have spent the last century or more understanding our physical world. This proposal sketches out visionary scientific endeavours, forming an ambitious concept that allows us to answer a whole range of challenging questions. Integrating the European engineering, natural, and social science communities, this proposal will release a huge potential.The need of a socio-economic knowledge collider was first pointed out in the OECD Global Science Forum on Applications of Complexity Science for Public Policy in Erice from October 5 to 7, 2008. Since then, many scientists have called for a large-scale ICT-based research initiative on techno-social-economic-environmental issues, sometimes phrased as a Manhattan-, Apollo-, or CERN-like project to study the way our living planet works in a social dimension. Due to the connotations, we use the term knowledge accelerator, here. An organizational concept for the establishment of a knowledge accelerator is currently being sketched within the EU Support Action VISIONEER, see www.visioneer.ethz.ch. The EU Flagship initiative is exactly the right instrument to materialize this concept and thereby tackle the global challenges for mankind in the 21st century.Download:  FuturICT Project Summary,   FuturICT Project Outline FuturICT Project Impact Living Earth Simulator Platform Global Participatory Platform Planetary Nervous System Platform Innovation Accelerator Platform

Who’s Involved

The FuturICT flagship proposal intends to unify hundreds of the best scientists in Europe in a 10 year 1 billion EUR program to explore social life on earth and everything it relates to. The FuturICT flagship proposal will produce historic breakthroughs and provide powerful new ways to manage challenges that make the modern world so difficult to predict, including the financial crisis.

  • Academic Institutions
  • Research Centers and other Scientific Organizations
  • Supercomputing Centers
  • Business and Industrial Partners
  • Notable Individuals
  • Arts Centers
  • Government Agencies
  • Political Organizations
The full list of involved and associated organisations can be found on the FuturICT website “Who is involved“.

Supporters and Institutions

To be officially listed as a supporter of the initiative, organisations may fill in the registration form to provide FuturICT with information on scientific background, institutional association, approaches in work and contact information. Only your name and institutional association will be shown on the supporters page.

National FuturICT Hubs

Progress is also being made in coordinating national efforts across the EU towards launching the FuturICT project.