Logo Funded by Interreg IVC and European Union

Objectives

The overall objective of the ENGAGE project is to help rural regions across Europe to better understand and address the issue of “How to build a high speed broadband (HSB) network at efficient cost in rural areas” in order to make sure that the requisite are fulfilled for the maintenance or even strengthening of local populations and economic activities.

ENGAGE will help the participating regions to fasten the setting up and the implementation of HSB policies, due to the significance and strategic importance of the NGA networks.
Sub objectives are:

  • to share knowledge and develop more active regional/local public policies for HSB infrastructures & related services and promote genuine interregional co-operation.
  • to adapt and optimise local public policies in the short-medium run with relevant technical and economical solutions in terms of HSB.
  • to involve the relevant decision-makers and potential project promoters in the definition of an implementation plan considered as a consensual and realistic roadmap for action over the next 2 to 5 years.
  • to disseminate widely the results in each partner territory and to the community of potential results' users, especially by offering a sustainable network of experts in HSB.

As a minimum, the following issues will be addressed during the project implementation:

1.How to define relevant regional plans for the establishment of HSB connection?
The deployment of very high speed networks induces an increased risk of “geographical digital divide” and the goal of encouraging an inclusive digital economy must remain a priority in the regional strategy. Application of a neutral technology approach would be necessary to ensure achieving open access network so as everyone can promote new services and innovation projects in order to provide the ground for economic growth.

2.Which technology mix to optimize the cost of the network?
A multitechnology scenario is necessary to ensure achieving the develoment of high speed connection in remote areas. What is the good mix of technologies (Wireless solution, optic fiber network, separation from the local network, VDSL...)?

3.How to define valid economics models to calculate the return of investment? ICT services as a way to fund high speed networks?
Identify the services that can be enabled through HSB access and demonstrate that e-services can generate public savings on different actions (utilities..).

4.High speed observatories in rural areas (mapping of the uses and speed)
How to identify where regulatory measures can be applied /to what extent?

5.How to identify the best way of setting up PPPs and access to public and private funding solutions?
Generally it is assumed that private companies will carry out most of the tasks required for the Next generation internet access. But in the market failure zone, direct & public funding is a necessity.

Further Readings

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