03 November 2017
VSMM 2017 took place in University College Dublin, organised by SMARTlab, on 31 Oct - 02 November as the 23rd International Conference on Virtual Systems and Multimedia: "Through the Looking Glass - Back to the Future of Virtual Reality". It focused on ground-breaking applications of new media, VR, sensing, and imaging in creative societies, bringing together over 150 participants from Europe, US and Australia.
IST-Africa results were showcased by Paul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham, IIMC during two plenary sessions on 01 November and 02 November to to raise awareness of opportunities for cooperation between Europe and Africa.
The presentations shared insights into IST-Africa activities, opportunities for EU-Africa research cooperation under Horizon 2020, results from the ICT-39-2015 Call and interim results from the ICT-39-2017 Call focused on addressing Africa ICT and Innovation-related research challenges based on end user requirements.
The mapping of common research priorities, research organisations and Innovation spaces was shared. The IST-Africa Report on ICT Initiatives, Research and Innovation Priorities and Capacity provides an update on the ICT enabling Environment, ICT-related Initiatives and Research Capacity in the targeted countries; National Research Priorities, Priority areas for collaboration in the context of the ICT-39-2017 Call of H2020, a mapping of research priorities to H2020 themes, summary of participation under FP7 and Horizon 2020 and a mapping of Innovation Spaces in Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Senegal, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania and Uganda as at October 2017, ISBN No: 978-1-905824-58-8.
A case study was presented on the mHealth4Afrika initiative, one of the projects co-funded under the ICT-39-2015 Call, focused on supporting primary health care delivery in deprived semi-urban, rural and deep rural clinics in Southern Africa (Malawi, South Africa), East Africa (Kenya) & Horn of Africa (Ethiopia).
Both plenary sessions were very well attended with delegates from a number of European countries, as well as Australia and the US. There was a lot of interest expressed in cooperating with African institutions.