In January it was finally kick-off for the EU financed innovation action project AURORAL (www.auroral.eu/about) where Hafenstrom participates alongside 24 other partners. With a timeframe of 4 year and a budget of 16 million euro, AURORAL is a very ambitious project.
Several promising concepts and areas will be demonstrated through the project. Smart communities, digitalization of energy, mobility, smart farming, tourism and health services are all areas that will be touched upon. For more examples, www.auroral.eu/solutions
The delivery of products and services for citizens (both commercial and public ones) are traditionally optimized around urban areas with dense population. In rural locations, further from urban centres, many services have only limited availability. There are digital platforms that offer service specific functionalities – such as mobility apps, shopping apps etc. Still, the services, provided by the yet available digital platforms, are often focused to urban areas. In rural areas they are either not available or available under disadvantageous conditions.
AURORAL presents a digital framework to address the technological shortcomings and pilots need to address the population engagement so that they match technology and people to produce the desirable impacts. One of the results will be the AURORAL Marketplace and Commodities Services that aim to integrate several different marketplace applications and services.
The AURORAL digital environment will offer an open API allowing for creating markets for services in rural areas with the long-term goal of establishing an open market place. One game changer may be the “Interoperability as a Service” for 3rd party digital service platforms. Thanks to this feature, 3rd party app developers can easily offer their digital products and services to rural citizens through open APIs. (e.g., managers of rural facilities publish info about their facilities. Based on this info, service providers can offer appropriate applications for the specific facilities).
Rural areas are key to solve climate change, food provision, biomass and energy challenges. However, lower population and business density make more challenging to develop private businesses and public services in rural area. By providing interoperable services, rural ecosystems allowing for services, applications and innovation, AURORAL aim to increase economic growth in rural areas and to tackle significant societal challenges
Through pilots conducted in among Norway, improvement of various public services such as health, education, social care, etc. will be demonstrated. Thanks to data abundance in rural regions, the engagement of rural population may significantly increase in digital ecosystems. Hafenstrom will be involved in the pilot conducted in the arctic regions of Norway, but several other pilots will take place in other regions (www.auroral.eu/tag/regions)
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and Innovation programme under grant agreement N° 101016854. Topic: DT-ICT-09-2020 (IA)