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The European Union has allocated funding under the auspices of the Horizon 2020 programme to three major consortia in which the UvA is a partner. The research subjects involve the digital maturity of children, the development of copyright in a digital society, and the transformative power of art for individuals and for society as a whole.

Map of Europe containing pushpins
Charles Clegg, FlickrCC

The projects:

Digital maturity of children

The UvA is a partner in the project Establishing a Comprehensive Understanding and Taxonomy of Children’s Digital Maturity (DIGYMATEX), which is being coordinated by Aarhus University (Denmark). The UvA part is being led by developmental psychologist Dr Wouter van den Bos. The subsidy for the total project is 3.5 million euros. Eleven partner institutions are participating in the project, including IBM.

Insight into how children deal with IT is important, because it allows for the anticipation of potential opportunities and risks. In the DIGYMATEX project, the researchers will develop tools that will allow for greater insight into the digital maturity of children and how this maturity maximises risks (risk factors), minimises risks (resilience factors) and maximises benefits (reinforcing factors) associated with children's ICT-related behaviour. The tools, based on in-depth research, can be used by, among others, children and their parents, teachers and school administrators, scientists, companies and policy makers.

Van den Bos will be involved in the development of an innovative instrument: the Digital Youth Maturity Index (DYMI). This index will contribute to a comprehensive understanding of the digital maturity of children. In addition, van den Bos will be involved in research in which digital maturity is linked to the social, cognitive and neural development of children.

Copyright in digital society

In the project Rethinking Digital Copyright Law for a Culturally Diverse, Accessible, Creative Europe (reCreating Europe), which is being coordinated by the Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies (Italy), the UvA parts of the research will be led by Dr Joost Poort, Prof. Mireille van Eechoud, Dr Stef van Gompel and Dr João Pedro Quintais of the Institute for Information Law. Ten partners are involved in the project, and the total award is more than 10 million euros.

Technological developments have led to an unprecedented democratisation of cultural production - think of Instagram, where photographers, whether professional or non-professional, share their work with the world, or Spotify, where every musician or producer can upload their own music or podcast. The production and use of copyrighted works increases with every new technology. An effective system of future-proof digital copyright norms is therefore of great importance. The reCreating Europe project will focus on the influence of digitisation and the digital single market on cultural diversity, access to culture and the creation of culture in Europe. The ultimate goal is to contribute to a regulatory framework that promotes culturally diverse production and optimises inclusive access to, and consumption of, culture.

The project has a multidisciplinary approach that brings together researchers, people from the field and other stakeholders. Poort and his colleagues from the Institute for Information Law will work partly independently and partly in collaboration with other partners in the consortium on various subprojects, aimed at makers / performers, the creative industry and intermediaries such as YouTube.

Read more about reCreating Europe

Change through art

The UvA is a partner in the project Art and Research on Transformations of Individuals and Societies (ARTIS), which is coordinated by the University of Vienna (Austria). There are in total nine partner institutions. The UvA part of the project is led by social and cultural psychologist Dr Eftychia Stamkou. The project as a whole will receive almost 3 million euros.

Art can stimulate change - in your way of thinking, your opinion or your attitudes. This applies to individuals, but also to society as a whole. In the ARTIS project, the research consortium will examine what underlies the transformative power of art. The ultimate goal is to contribute to better policies that promote the power of art. To this end, the researchers will develop a systematic programme in which empirical and theoretical research is combined with the perspective of artists, art educators and other stakeholders. The ARTIS consortium will map the kind of experiences people have with art and how experiences with art can lead to both new ways of thinking and increased involvement and action with regard to societal challenges. This concerns both experiences with mainstream and avant-garde art as well as marginalized and disengaged individuals.

The project will apply interdisciplinary methods, including neuro-imaging, interviews, focus groups, eye tracking, movement tracking, network modelling, diary data, and cross-cultural surveys. The insights obtained will be translated into policy guidelines that will be disseminated by key stakeholders within the arts and culture sectors.

The social dimension of the European Union

The EU, within the scope of Horizon 2020, has also granted funding to the project The Future of European Social Citizenship (EUSOCIALCIT), which is being coordinated by UvA University Professor Frank Vandenbroucke.

Read more about EUSOCIALCIT

Read more about the Horizon 2020 programme