Welcome to Research Networking in FP5
Research Networking and IST
'Research Networking' is a key area within the Information Society Technologies (IST) Programme. Work focuses on two complementary approaches:
- the broadband interconnection of national research and education networks; and
- the establishment of advanced European experimental test-beds.
The IST Programme is therefore extremely well placed to respond to the challenges defined by the eEurope initiative (see below). This website aims to provide an overview of the broad set of activities carried out at European level, mainly in the context of IST, on topics related to ‘information infrastructures for research’ and ‘research on advanced networking technologies’.
The eEurope perspective
The eEurope 2002 Action Plan emphasises ‘Faster internet for researchers and students’ as one of its priority activities. In this action line it states the importance of creating:
‘A very high-speed trans-European network for electronic scientific communications linking research institutions and universities, as well as scientific libraries, scientific centres and, progressively, schools.’
For more information about eEurope initiative visit the eEurope website.
More information about the eEurope initiative is also available on this website.
Research Networking in Europe
Developments in computer science and information processing are changing the way researchers visualise their results, while networking technologies such as the internet or the all-optical networks make it easier to share those results with others.
All this adds up to a revolution in the way scientists work – a phenomenon some are calling ‘e-science’. At the heart of e-science lies the need to support collaborations between geographically dispersed, or ‘virtual’, research teams using electronic networks enabling them to not only communicate with their fellow scientists but also to access resources such as large databases, scientific experiments and high-performance computing.
In data-intensive areas of research, such as particle physics or genome research, high-performance Research Networking and Grids are now essential for mining, sharing and analysing data as well as visualising the end results. They are becoming increasingly important in other disciplines too.
Given this background, it is essential for Europe to stay at the forefront of Research Networking. The challenges are two-fold:
- Firstly, to build and deploy a high-capacity network infrastructure based on state-of-the-art technologies to meet the current and anticipated needs of Europe’s research community (i.e. GÉANT).
- Secondly, to push back the technological boundaries even further by undertaking innovative research on advanced networking technologies and establishing experimental test-beds.