Digital • Envi • Mobility & Energy • Agri & Food • Health • Scipol & Comm • EU initiatives • Curious news
In the spotlight
EU considers sweeping new AI rules, with fines if companies don’t comply
Leaked legislative proposal shows bloc leaning towards bans on surveillance and social scoring applications, and a broad interpretation of what makes for a high-risk AI system.
Life inside the self-optimizing AI automated company
As we apply an increasing amount of automation technology to business operations, it almost starts to draw the question: will human employees still be needed, eventually? The answer could be the adoption of self-optimizing AI and decision management into the way a business operates.
Podcast: what’s AI doing in your wallet?
Our entire financial system is built on trust. We can exchange otherwise worthless paper bills for fresh groceries, or swipe a piece of plastic for new clothes. But this trust—typically in a central government-backed bank—is changing. As our financial lives are rapidly digitized, the resulting data turns into fodder for AI.
Artificial intelligence is helping humans make new kinds of art. It is more likely to emerge as a collaborator than a competitor for those working in creative industries https://t.co/FbjI4mDKIr pic.twitter.com/XTRye3SFtn
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) April 14, 2021
Crypto flagship Coinbase jumps 11% after stormy Nasdaq debut
Coinbase Global Inc shares jumped 11% in early trading on Thursday, a day after the cryptocurrency exchange went public in a high-profile debut on the Nasdaq that briefly valued it at more than $100 billion.
— Bloomberg (@business) April 15, 2021
Aviation sector calls for unified cybersecurity practices to mitigate growing risks
The aviation industry needs to unify its approach to prevent cybersecurity shocks, according to a new study released today by the World Economic Forum.
— EU Climate Action (@EUClimateAction) April 15, 2021
#Nature can help reduce the impacts of #climatechange and increase societal resilience with multiple benefits for #biodiversity, human well-being, reducing emissions and building a #sustainableeconomy. Our new assessment: https://t.co/bQ2nqCEgd7
— EU EnvironmentAgency (@EUEnvironment) April 16, 2021
Contribute to a safer #circulareconomy where harmful chemicals don’t end up in recycled materials. If you produce, import or supply articles containing substances of very high concern, #SVHCs, you must notify us via the #SCIPDatabase.
— European Chemicals Agency – ECHA 🇪🇺 (@EU_ECHA) April 16, 2021
Planet ocean: why is the Blue Economy so important?
The Earth could have been called Planet Ocean. In fact, oceans are our planet’s largest life support system. About 70% of the planet’s surface is covered by water, and 97% of this water is found in the oceans. In addition, ocean currents govern the world’s weather and its dependent biomes.
Space junk removal is not going smoothly
Despite promising technology demonstrations, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for the growing problem of taking out the orbital trash.
Mobility & Energy
In just a week, a metre of cotoneaster cleans up 800km of car emissions.
— World Economic Forum (@wef) April 16, 2021
People’s health depends on the health of the 🌍.
Shifting from car use to active transport contributes to a reduction in emissions of air pollutants and greenhouse gas, reducing deaths and illnesses from air pollution and mitigating climate change. pic.twitter.com/C4xG3x4esc
— WHO/Europe (@WHO_Europe) April 16, 2021
Researchers in Atlanta have designed a small, flexible antenna intended to harvest electrical power from signals emitted by 5G mobile-phone masts https://t.co/J5LPbaJLjn
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) April 16, 2021
Will future electric vehicles be powered by deep-sea metals?
Greenpeace International activists aboard the Rainbow Warrior display banners reading “Stop Deep Sea Mining” in front of the Maersk Launcher, a ship chartered by DeepGreen, one of the companies spearheading the drive to mine the barely understood deep sea ecosystem.
From electric cars to rural internet, this is Spain’s recovery plan
Spain outlined its Recovery and Resilience plan on Tuesday aiming to revive and modernise its economy after a record 10.8% contraction in 2020, using 72 billion euros ($85.87 billion) in European grants it is due to receive by 2023.
Agriculture & Food
In the EU still 2⃣0⃣% of the total food produced is lost or wasted
The #EUFarm2Fork Strategy is set to halve food waste per capita in the EU by 2030 🖱 click below for more
— EU Food Safety #EUFarm2Fork (@Food_EU) April 16, 2021
“We looked at wildlife farming in Vietnam, specifically different species of rodents…and we found the presence of coronaviruses.” Amanda Fine of @WcsHealth explains how disease could have ended up in China’s food markets, on “Babbage” https://t.co/nFbcaQmEIi
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) April 16, 2021
Road to ruin: informal byways sow seeds of destruction in Colombia’s Amazon
Across San Vicente del Caguan, one of the country’s most deforested regions, illegal and informal roads fan out in an ever-expanding network, bringing visitors, commercial interests and farmers and ranchers who clear and burn the land. The result is the steady decay of Colombia’s Amazon.
— WHO/Europe (@WHO_Europe) April 16, 2021
#DYK heart attack & stroke kill more women than breast cancer?
— European Research Council (ERC) (@ERC_Research) April 16, 2021
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) April 15, 2021
WHO, agencies urge countries to suspend sale of live wild mammals at markets
International agencies including the World Health Organization urged countries on Tuesday to suspend the sale of live wild mammals in food markets, warning they may be the source of more than 70% of emerging infectious diseases in humans.
Science policy & Communication
"Improved access to meaningful data would allow researchers to interpret the scope and scale of disinformation more effectively in real world contexts." Rachelle Faust and @DCebul on how to help civil society's disinformation researchers flourish: https://t.co/0Ut9VxuVlV
— Forum @ NED (@ThinkDemocracy) April 15, 2021
“The idea is to have national hubs or multinational hubs covering all member states in Europe,” says @goripaula in an interview with @CCCPodcastVOC about #EDMOeu's joint effort to tackle online #disinformation.
— European Digital Media Observatory (@EDMO_EUI) April 16, 2021
Advocates for children around the world urge Facebook chief Zuckerberg to ditch plans for a version of Instagram geared toward pre-teens.
— AFP News Agency (@AFP) April 16, 2021
Future EU platform seeks ‘stay clean’ of hate speech
The digital platform aiming to allow European citizens to share and debate ideas will start next Monday (19 April). Participants will need to subscribe to a “Conference Charter”, which is designed to keep hate speech and disinformation at bay.
Without his Twitter account, Trump’s conspiracy theories find little traction
They didn’t lead the evening news broadcasts. They didn’t generate big headlines in the New York Times or Washington Post. And while some news outlets did cover his statement , it was more background noise to the breaking news — rather than the main event.
Do policymakers tend to favour quantitative research over qualitative #research?
— Science Advice for Policy by European Academies (@SAPEAnews) April 14, 2021
🇪🇺EU has a potential Marshall Plan for oncology and must not let it fail.#EUCancerPlan has met with applause and as the #pandemic is taking a heavy toll on #cancer detection and care, the plan needs to be urgently and properly implemented.
— European Economic and Social Committee (@EU_EESC) April 16, 2021
— ENISA (@enisa_eu) April 15, 2021
EPRS Briefing – The rise of digital health technologies during the pandemic
Coronavirus has accelerated the rise of digital health, a broad concept that includes solutions for telemedicine and teleconsultation, remote monitoring, connected devices, digital health platforms and health apps.
To improve Pilica's river systems, #LIFEproject PL Pilica Basin CTRL 🇵🇱 will:
🌬️ reduce pollution in rural areas
💧 increase water quality
🌱boost ecosystem services
— LIFE Programme (@LIFEprogramme) April 13, 2021
Hear the haunting music MIT scientists made from sounds of spider webs
Coming soon to a music venue near you. Spiders don’t see well, so they sense the world through the vibrations that ripple through their intricate webs as they stretch silk strands or a breeze blows. Turns out those vibrations make for some otherworldly music.
Sitting in a tin can: why sci-fi films are finally telling astronaut life like it is
A nybody who fancies watching a new science fiction film this month can count their lucky stars. A Netflix drama, Stowaway , features Anna Kendrick, Toni Collette and Daniel Dae Kim as a trio of astronauts who are on their way to Mars when they discover that an unfortunate launch-plan engineer, Shamier Anderson, is still onboard.
UAE women scientists lead Arab world’s first space mission to Mars
The first mission to Mars launched by the United Arab Emirates is set to enter the planet’s orbit on Tuesday following a seven-month, 494 million-kilometer (307 million miles) journey. This would make the UAE the fifth space agency to reach the red planet and mark the first interplanetary mission led by an Arab country.