The JOINT OPEN LAB, a joint venture between Telecom Italia and the Technology Institute of Turin, will conduct research into a host of areas, including robots capable of interacting with the internet on active exploration missions (Cloud Robotics), applications for the visual recognition of images and integration into data (Visual Communication), advanced leading-edge platforms for social media, social reading and augmented reality (Mobile Social Media), and technologies for interactive cities (Smart Urban Spaces). The lab is being set up at the Cittadella Politecnica as part of a new partnership model that the University is promoting between academia, society and the economy, going beyond technology transfer by offering knowledge sharing at all stages of the research process.
The goal is to establish a skills centre that focuses on the adoption of next-generation ICT. The lab will develop technologies and applications that match the innovation strategy pursued by Telecom Italia as it develops its fixed line and mobile ultra-broadband networks, as well as cloud-based applications technologies, which will benefit from a major boost by combining the Politecnico di Torino’s areas of excellence with Telecom Italia’s business experience. This venture consolidates the partnership between Telecom Italia and Politecnico di Torino, which has already including funding 15 Ph.D. scholarships, advanced training apprenticeship contracts for graduating students, a Masters in ICT Industry Networks and Services Innovation over the last five years, and participation in funding applications for many domestic and international projects.
The three-year agreement was signed this morning by Rector Marco Gilli and Telecom Italia’s Head of Innovation & Industry Relations, Cesare Sironi, at the 2012-2013 Academic Year inauguration ceremony. This venture is part of Telecom Italia’s wider plan to establish groundbreaking research centres across Italy in partnership with leading Italian universities, as a way of rethinking and transforming relations between business, research and university teaching in the field of technological innovation.
Cesare Sironi, Head of Telecom Italia Innovation & Industry Relations, says: “Telecom Italia is very keen to invest in university research and advanced training. The company has approached Italy’s most prestigious universities, including the Politecnico di Torino, with which we have a consolidated relationship, in order to forge a new approach to teaching and research that has immediate positive repercussions on business.” He added: “Telecom Italia wishes to continue along this path, as is evident from today’s announcement to establish a veritable joint research lab. This move is part of the Group’s broader plan to radically transform the template of relationships between academia and business, creating value and feeding business with innovative ideas from local level up.”
Politecnico Rector Marco Gilli said: “The reputation of our university and our standing as a major university-level technical institute will be played out over the next few years on our ability to combine advanced training and research and to share – rather than simply transfer – the knowledge assets we are capable of developing with players in the socio-economic system. This is why we are moving towards this new template for research: one of ‘knowledge sharing’ based on complementary competencies. This agreement with Telecom Italia is a prime example of this approach. We have no doubt that we shall start seeing results in the very near future. The value added of this partnership is something we can redeem through joint participation in research-based funding applications in Italy and Europe.”
Turin, 5 December 2012