Digital Day 2019: EU countries will commit to three digital cooperation initiatives

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Tomorrow at the Digital Day 2019, EU Member States are expected to sign three Declarations to pool efforts and resources for accelerating digital developments in key areas that can bring tangible benefits to our economies and our societies.

This year’s Digital Day will bring Member States and EU institutions together with partners from industry, academia and civil society, and take digital cooperation forward for digitising cultural heritage, smart and sustainable agriculture, as well as for encouraging women’s participation in digital. This follows the successful cooperation launched in previous editions of the event, e.g. on artificial intelligence in 2018 and on supercomputing in 2017.

Andrus Ansip, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market, said: “As the Digital Single Market is becoming a reality step by step, we remain committed to realising Europe’s full digital potential. The new commitments being made today are consolidating Member States’ endeavours towards a more competitive and inclusive digital Europe.

Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, said: “The Digital Day represents an important opportunity towards completing our Digital Single Market. Exchanges during the day will provide further impetus for Member States’ engagement in digital and demonstrate the added value of EU’s concerted action in the area.”

The participating Member States will sign new Declarations of cooperation on:

  • Empowering women’s participation in digital:Women account for 52% of the European population, yet hold only 15% of ICT-related jobs. Member States will commit to closer cooperation to increase women’s visibility and empowerment in the digital economy. The Declaration builds on the Council of the EU Presidency’s conclusions on gender equality, youth and digitalisation and on the Declaration on gender equality. More about the Declaration will be available here at around 12:30 CEST tomorrow.
  • Building a smart and sustainable digital future for European agriculture and rural areas: Enhanced cooperation on leveraging digital technologies can help tackle important economic, social, climate and environmental challenges in agriculture and rural areas. Smart farming will not only help to increase efficiency of farms, but can also help to create sustainable jobs and growth and benefit the quality of life in rural areas. Further details about the Declaration will be available here at around 15:30 CEST tomorrow.
  • Digitising cultural heritage:State of the artdigital technologies can help to preserve Europe’s rich cultural heritage and to mitigate the risks it faces. Building on the momentum of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, the Declaration aims to advance digitisation of heritage artefacts, monuments and sites, as well as foster citizen engagement and cross-border cooperation. More information will be available here at around 17:20 CEST tomorrow.

Highlights of the Digital Day 2019 also include the presentation of the guidelines for trustworthy artificial intelligence (AI) by the High-Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence (at 9:30-11:15 CEST tomorrow; see also today’s Commission’s Communication on AI), as well as a number of panel discussions, including on the progress of the Digital Single Market.

Ahead of the Digital Day, stakeholders from the Southern Mediterranean will be looking for new ways of working together for connectivity and data at the Digital4Med conference this afternoon. The event can be followed live starting at 14:00 CEST today.