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The Paris Agreement shows the willingness of all nations to combat hand-in-hand the challenges of climate change. However, willingness per se is easily defeated by harsh realities. More than ever, cooperation is needed. But sacrifices will also be asked. How to negotiate them?

Four scenarios of China’s R&I landscape in 2025

Science and Technology October 8th, 2015, Stavros Mantzanakis / Director, Phemonoe Lab, CEO, Emetris Consulting

What are the main factors that will affect the Research & Innovation Environment in China until 2025? A recently released report, China 2025: Research and Innovation Landscape, identifies 16 factors that could drive various evolution scenarios.

Democracy 2.1: when maths reinvent politics

Society September 29th, 2015, Karel Janeček / Mathematician, entrepreneur, and anti-corruption campaigner

Mathematics and technology are increasingly used in decision-making. The current trend is even to replace human decisions by machine decisions. But in some experiences, technological innovation helps to reinvigorate the most human of all decision process: democracy. This is the purpose of the Democracy 2.1 experiment, launched by the Czech mathematician Karel Janeček: a radical innovation of the voting system, based on mathematical intuitions derived from game theory.

It is a paradox: despite huge oil reserves supporting their wealth, Norwegians have become, in a few years, the first users of electric vehicles. These represent 18% of new registrations since the beginning of 2015! The key to this unprecedented growth, nowhere else to be found, is their convincing policy of incentives... so convincing, in fact, that its designers have been overwhelmed by its success: the model is bound to evolve.

The more pervasive the threat, the higher the economic implications: no wonder cybersecurity has come under the spotlight in recent months. What, exactly, is at stake? And should the C-suite take hold?

Net neutrality: network as a necessity

Society March 25th, 2015, WEI Wuhui / Lecturer, School of Media and Design, Shanghai Jiaotong University

The Net neutrality has nothing to do with universal values. Its aim is to balance interests between Internet service providers and Internet content providers. This was the biggest stake in the U.S. Federal Communications Commission decision, in February. What did it say exactly? Can such a decision really provide the ICPs and public with a free and equal Internet accessibility without any costs?

During the 20th century Governments and public agencies such as NASA played a major role in the innovation chain. The Internet itself was born through public programs, just as GPS and many other game-changing technologies. But in recent years, questions arose over the efficiency of public efforts, challenged by smart, dynamic, powerful corporations such as Google, on the one hand, or bottom-up and open source models, on the other hand. Are Governments out of the game?

An ethical governance of Big Data

Society December 22nd, 2014, Jérôme Béranger / Senior Consultant, Keosys, Associate Researcher, Espace Ethique Méditerranéen

We bathe in a controlled digital reality where a multitude of information flows converge. Processing these data has become a sensitive issue inasmuch as they relate to our private sphere, to our intimacy. Personal control is only partly effective since almost nobody knows how to implement it seriously. This is why experts have been discussing the opportunity of Big Data governance. How can we proceed? Alongside the institutional answers based on the emergence of control authorities, one possible path forward could be via ethical data mining.

The fight for digital sovereignty: industrial factors

Society June 30th, 2014, Nicolas Colin & Henri Verdier / Co-founder, TheFamily & Director, Etalab

The question addresses Europe, as well as emerging countries: how can we ever hope to have an influence on Internet governance if there is no strong, industrial power operating in the digital field?

Offshoring strategies: what’s on with cultural institutions?

Society May 30th, 2014, François Chaubet & Laurent Martin / Professors of Contemporary History, University Paris 10 Nanterre & University Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3

Following suit to the Guggenheim Museum, a number of Western cultural institutions have launched a series of spectacular offshoring operations, exporting their trademarks and their specific know-how. Playing somewhere between influence diplomacy and cultural marketing, museums and universities in the Western world are trying their luck in the new Paradises of the Middle East or Asia. What are the expected benefits and what are their strategies?

The precautionary principle is frequently cited in major international statements. However, implementing it still stirs up a lot of debate: is it feasible, is it advisable? Today with hindsight, controversy and experience have enabled us to better frame a somewhat abstract idea that is still seeking its path forward. Two countries only, France and Ecuador have appended the principle to their respective Constitutions and in the former we see some emblematic examples of difficulties to be overcome in enforcing the Principle.

The future of the automotive industry: who will invest in intelligent transportation systems?

Society February 11th, 2014, Rémi Maniak / Associate Professor at Telecom ParisTech and Researcher at Ecole Polytechnique

The advent of intelligent transportation systems creates opportunities for many players, from the Internet giants to the pioneers of the sharing economy... including smart public authorities. But who will invest? How to share costs and profits? And who will own the data?

Blind-alley logics for electricity in Europe

Industries December 3rd, 2013, Pierre Audigier / General Mining Engineer

The objective of the EU is to instate and implement a unified energy market by 2015. But opening markets and connecting grids may sound contradictory with unilateral decisions such as Germany's accelerated energy transition. Thus we see that there are two logics in Brussels, and with the increasing fraction and importance of renewables, they are now diverging more and more. It's time for the EU to look for technical as well as political solutions.

Tackling Corruption in Public Sector: an Indian Initiative

Society October 10th, 2013, Needamangalam Gopalaswami / Former Chief Election Commissioner of India

Institutions, and not only technology, are a driver for change. In India, a recent experience shows promising and somehow unexpected outcomes. The goal? Ensuring greater transparency and competition in the award of government contracts. The result? Greater transparency, indeed; but also a new, efficient tool for conflict resolution.

A brief history of Open Data

Society March 29th, 2013, Simon Chignard / Consultant

The open data movement has reached a significant and ever-growing number of states and governments. From New York to Paris, from Nairobi to Singapore, an increasing number of territories offer open sets of data. To fully understand the stakes of this movement, one of the first techno-political ideas to spread at the network speed, one has to track its origins.

IT for ID: India’s Biometrics Megaproject

Society January 31st, 2013, Nandan Nilekani / Head of the Unique Identification Authority of India

Launched in 2009, the Unique Identification Authority of India is a megaproject mixing the latest information technologies and basic development requirements. Its objective is both simple and ambitious: to provide a unique identity number to all residents in the country. Helping the poorest to access the modern economy and society is an emergency and a key to economic and social development. It is also a challenge, and not only a technical one.

Mistakes Politicians Make

Society January 25th, 2012, David E. Lewis / William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Political Science at Vanderbilt University

There are systematic reasons why elected officials make certain kinds of mistakes over and over. One thing political scientists have discovered by examining the political species is that it shares common characteristics picked up by adapting to its natural environment. One of the strongest motivating forces in this environment is the pressure for reelection. It is precisely this drive for reelection that introduces predictable biases into political decision-making and helps explain governments' paralysis in the face of some very serious problems.

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