Clustering webinar @ NRF 2022

Clustering webinar @ NRF 2022

On 16 November 2022, as part of the Nicosia Risk Forum 2022, 6 EU-funded projects participated to a clustering session on new technologies for first responders at the initiative of the RESPOND-A Project. The session allowed projects working in the same field to connect as well as share knowledge and lessons learnt. Inter-projects initiatives are essential for the development of these projects and are in-line with the work carried out by the European Commission DG HOME’s CERIS (Community for European Research and Innovation for Security) which is bridging the various actors of the European PPDR (Public Protection and Disaster Relief) community to identify gaps, create synergies and facilitate the uptake of innovation by society.

The participating projects were:

  • RESPOND-A: Next-generation equipment tools and mission-critical strategies for First Responders
  • SEARCH&RESCUE: Emerging technologies for the Early location of Entrapped victims under Collapsed Structures and Advanced Wearables for risk assessment and First Responders Safety in SAR operations
  • ASSISTANCE: Adapted Situation Awareness Tools And Tailored Training Scenarios For Increasing Capabilities And Enhancing The Protection Of First Responders
  • TEAMAWARE: Team Awareness Enhanced with Artificial Intelligence and Augmented Reality
  • INGENIOUS: The First Responder (FR) of the Future: a Next Generation Integrated Toolkit (NGIT) for Collaborative Response, increasing protection and augmenting operational capacity
  • RESCUER: first Responder-Centered support toolkit for operating in adverse and infrastructure-less Environments.

Main Takeaways

During the open discussion it was emphasised that First Responders need to get hands-on access to the innovations and technologies from an early stage to be able to test them, provide feedback and help shape the development of these solutions to ensure that they respond to practitioners’ needs and are, as adapted to their standard operating procedures as possible. The integration and interoperability of these innovative solutions within existing legacy systems should be examined and facilitated to the maximum. First responders need to be able to focus on operations, innovations should not become a burden or hinder their capabilities. Solutions ought to be as cost-effective and user-friendly as possible. With regards to the exploitation and sustainability of solutions, it is imperative to elaborate well in advance a roadmap gather interest, engage with first responders and show the products and services to potential customers. The most mature technologies should be intensively promoted using all available means (exhibition, events, Horizon Result Booster). To facilitate the uptake of these solutions, networking and dissemination activities are key. The gaps that the solutions are attempting to solve should be clearly highlighted as well as how these innovations concretely enhance or/and facilitate crisis management operations.