2 May 2022

Call for Researchers for the Joint Study Group 2022: The Digital Transition in EU’s Southern Neighbourhood: Progress, Obstacles and Opportunities

As part of the project EuroMeSCo: Connecting the Dots, co-funded by the European Union and the European Institute of the Mediterranean (IEMed), we are opening calls for researchers to take part in five different Joint Study Groups.

The EuroMeSCo Joint Study Groups 2022 will be made up of four Authors, including a Coordinator, who will jointly produce a Policy Study over a period of 6-7 months. Interested researchers may apply as Author or as Author and Coordinator to each Joint Study Group. In both cases, they will have to complete the online form and submit their application by 18 May (included).

Here is a brief description of the rationale of this Joint Study Group:

The Digital Transition in EU’s Southern Neighbourhood: Progress, Obstacles and Opportunities

The digital transition is one of the 6 political priorities of the European Union. It is also a priority of its SN partners that have adopted strategic frameworks to accelerate this transition (e.g., 2025 Strategy for Digital Transformation in Tunisia), as well a priority for Euro-Mediterranean cooperation (see for instance flagship 7 of the European Investment Plan on digital transformation).

Two years after the beginning of the pandemic and a year after the release of the New Agenda for the Mediterranean, this policy study will assess how the pandemic has indeed accelerated the digital transformation of EU’s SN partners, and how the Euro-Mediterranean cooperation in this area has made progress (see for instance the EU-Morocco digital partnership).

Moreover, this policy study will:

  • Assess how the digital transition has served the broader objective of inclusive socio-economic development
  • Assess how the digital transition has helped modernize governance systems, public services and education
  • Assess the links between the digital and the green transition. Digital technologies have indeed the potential to help sectors such as construction, manufacturing transport, farming and energy sector become greener. There are risks, however, of green and digital transition policies advancing in isolation and opportunities for a twin transition being missed. How can digitalisation accelerate the green transition in the MENA region (e.g., digital technology and innovation as a driver of green transition: use of big data for lowering emissions, or for example for renewables such as green hydrogen, in smart agriculture and waste management)? What are the risks of increased investment flows in the digital economy for the environment? Where can digitalization and greening policies clash? What implications do digital jobs and digital lifestyles have for the environment?

You may apply to more than one Joint Study Group but may eventually only be selected to join one of them.

See the EuroMeSCo Joint Study Groups 2022 Terms of Reference for more information.

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