European Data Forum a Great Success

The 2016 European Data Forum (EDF) which took place last week was a great success. This event which was setup by the European Commission supported by STI International and a number of prominent European researchers in 2012 has grown from under 200 participants to over 1000 registrations at this year’s event. EDF brings together key policy makers, industrial players and researchers to discuss issues around the area of Big Data.
                   
The event was opened by the CEO of Philips, Frans van Houten and included a video message from Gunther Oettinger the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society. The CEO and co-founder of TomTom, Harold Goddijn, explained his vision for self-driving cars. By 2020 the first commercial semi-autonomous cars will be available. Within 50 years self-driving taxis will transport city dwellers arriving within two minutes of a button press. He speculated that this mode of transport will include specific personal services such as built-in hair salons. Anders Arpteg, the Head of Analytics at Spotify, articulated how his data-first company uses data analytics to provide music recommendations, target advertising and help patients with Alzheimer’s.
 
Other presentations included Stef Oud from Deloitte Consulting who outlined how they are using Big Data to support arriving refugees in finding jobs and Peter Scheer from the Amsterdam Arena (home to the Ajax football team) who showed how soil sensors and data analytics are used to support grass maintenance by monitoring ambient moisture and tracking the individual paths taken by players. Wesley Goatley, a sound artist currently working on an MK:Smart art installation for the forthcoming Milton Keynes International Festival, expounded the relationship between art and Big Data and explained the concepts underlying some of his creations.
 
KMi was heavily involved in the organisation of EDF. John Domingue was a Conference Chair, Enrico Motta articulated the MK:Smart vision for smart urban environments, Zdenek Zdrahal talked about his team’s work on OU Analyse, the European Data Science Academy a KMi-coordinated project involving John Domingue, Alex Mikroyonnidis, Aba-Sah Dadzie and Aneta Tumilowicz was presented, and Damian Dadswell, Harriett Cornish, Paul Hogan and Jamie Daniels designed and developed the conference website and accompanying smart phone App.
 
EDF 2016 was an extremely stimulating event showcasing the very best in European Big Data research and innovation demonstrating the tremendous value that European collaboration can bring. Long may it continue!!   
 

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John Domingue introducing Zdenek Zdrahal for his OU Analyse Talk
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Enrico Motta presenting MKSmart
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John introducing Elena Simperl for her talk on the European Data Science Academy