Science & Technology Issue 21

In issue 21 of Science and Technology, the UK making the decision to leave the European Union and Donald Trump being elected as the USA’s president, allows for much reflection. Change is visible at many levels; the climate is changing, the ways in which people are living and working are changing; and the ways in which the inherent challenges are being addressed are similarly adapting, with research and becoming more open and inclusive.

What is new in technological developments?

  • Talking to Science and Technology 21, EIT Digital London node director, Denis Moynihan, discusses the remaining technology obstacles to the rollout of 5G, and shares his thoughts on wireless versus cellular technology, providing an insight into EIT Digital’s own work in these areas;
  • How can e-government enable citizens to become more active participants in the democratic process, and how will this kick-start the smart city revolution? WeGO’s Renato de Castro explained all at the Disruptive Technologies Conference in London, UK, which Science and Technology attended as media partner; and
  • As the European Commission prepares to launch a €1bn quantum technologies flagship, the commissioner responsible for the digital economy and society, Günther H Oettinger, tells Science and Technology 21 about the importance of quantum technologies and how the new flagship initiative will help to secure Europe’s quantum future.

How is mental healthcare changing?

  • Reflecting on events at the European level, Science and Technology 21 met with Health Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis as one of the most critical areas – health policy ­– faces multiple rising challenges such as AMR and the ageing population. While the EU may have limited powers in the arena, the commissioner makes clear his ambitions to promote a health future for Europe; and
  • Speaking to Science and Technology 21, ӦBVP vice-president Karl-Ernst Heidegger provides and insight into psychotherapy in Austria, reflects on the key challenges facing mental healthcare, and calls for wider, more easily affordable access to psychotherapy treatment for all those who need it.

How is a sustainable environment being achieved?

  • Connie Hedeaard, chair of the KR Foundation and former commissioner for climate action in the Barroso II Commission, explained to Science and Technology 21 the shifting role of Europe in climate leadership and the significance of China and the United States announcing plans to ratify the Paris Climate Agreement; and
  • Scientists at the DECADE Initiative are working to improve volcanic forecasting, as better anticipation could lower the human and economic toll of these natural phenomena, as Science and Technology 21 found out.