Horizon 2050 : Towards a greener, smarter world

A public Science|Business Network conference

The incoming European Commission’s policy agenda is arguably its most ambitious to date. During its five year term, the Commission will seek legally binding commitments to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, unlock €1 trillion in green transition financing by 2030, and take a global leadership role in the governance of artificial intelligence, among other headline goals. It will also launch Horizon Europe, its largest ever research and innovation programme, with a clearly defined range of impact targets.

In February, the Science|Business Annual Framework Conference will bring together over 300 stakeholders for two main purposes: first, to take stock of latest developments around the key pillars of the new agenda; and second, to explore their implications for the science, technology and innovation communities that will have a critical role to play in driving progress. By extension, it will address the challenge of developing the next generation(s) of researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs who will have a leading role to play in delivering a climate-neutral, sustainable Europe by 2050.

Alice P. Gast
President, Imperial College London
Clara De La Torre
Deputy Director-General, DG CLIMA, European Commission
Mauro Ferrari
President, European Research Council
Stefan Kaufmann
Member, Bundestag
Håkon Haugli
CEO, Innovation Norway
Renzo Tomellini
Acting Director, Policy and Programming Centre; Head of Unit, Horizon Strategic Planning and Programming, DG RTD, European Commission
Nina Kopola
Director General, Business Finland
Rutger Engels
Rector Magnificus, Erasmus University Rotterdam
Michel van der Bel
President, Microsoft EMEA
Thomas Palstra
Rector Magnificus, University of Twente
Daan du Toit
Deputy Director-General, International Cooperation and Resources, South African Department of Science and Innovation
Ilkka Niemelä
President, Aalto University
Thierry Lagrange
Head of Industry, Procurement and Knowledge Transfer, CERN
Paolo Maria Ferrão
President, COST Association
Harry McCann
EU Ambassador, #SaferInternet4EU campaign, European Commission; Digital Entrepreneur
Helena Lindemark
Founder & President, 2022 Initiative Foundation
Bertrand Braunschweig
Director, Coordination mission of the national AI research programme, INRIA
François Bertrand
Vice President, Academic and Research, Polytechnique Montreal
Patrick van der Smagt
Director, Machine Learning Research Lab, Volkswagen Group
Max Welling
Vice President, Technologies, Qualcomm; Research Chair, Machine Learning, University of Amsterdam
Alexander Denev
Head of AI, Financial Services Advisory, Deloitte
Dolf Gielen
Director, Innovation and Technology Centre, International Renewable Energy Agency
Preliminary Agenda

09:00 - Welcome

09:05  - Plenary I: Quo vadis?  Europe’s new agenda and the implications for science and technology

10:15 - Coffee

10:45  - Parallel Sessions I -  Defining pathways for future action

2 cross-cutting panel debates on climate- and AI-related themes:

A1 – Green dreams: Can breakthrough technologies deliver climate neutrality?

A2 – AI for bad: Can the world agree on how to regulate artificial intelligence?        

11:40 - Transition

11:50 - Parallel Sessions II - Defining pathways for future action

B1 – Race to the top: Will the Green Deal inspire a new era of international cooperation?

B2 – AI for good: Can future applications deliver universal benefits?  

12:45 - Networking lunch

13:45  - Parallel Sessions III Transforming Europe through science & technology

C1 – Blue skies ahead: How will frontier research respond to Europe’s new ambitions?                       

C2 – Radical innovation: Is industry ready to redefine the future?         

14:40 - Coffee

15:00 - Workshop Sessions  - Next Gen Europe: Towards a more sustainable future through research, innovation and youth

In-depth workshop discussions focused on developing the pool of talent for visionary research, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship in the years to come. Young scientists & innovators will be featured in each session!

NB: These workshops are open to sponsorship from partners active in talent identification and development. Please send expressions of interest to monica.mateu@sciencebusiness.net  (cc jenny.lee@sciencebusiness.net.) 

Indicative themes:

  1. Research skills for the open science era
  2. Digital talent pipelines for industry 5.0
  3. Training the next generation of green, smart entrepreneurs
  4. AI as an enabler of scientific discovery  

16:20 - Transition

16:30 - Plenary II - Event Horizon: Charting a new course    

17:30 - Conference close & networking reception



For more information:

  • For general information / Network members enquiries, please contact Lysiane Pons (lysiane.pons@sciencebusiness.net)
  • For questions regarding registration, please contact Andrea Stavrou (andrea.stavrou@sciencebusiness.net)
  • For sponsorship enquiries, please contact Monica Mateu (monica.mateu@sciencebusiness.net)