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INFO2000 aims at stimulating the emerging multimedia content industry to recognise and exploit new business opportunities. The importance of multimedia content has been recognised in a number of fora: the G7 conference of February 1995 on the Information Society, the Information Society Forum and the High Level Experts Group set up by the Commission. In particular, the Industry Council of 6/7 November 1995 invited the Commission to pursue initiatives that contribute to the advancement of the information content industry in view of the need to dispense content and services to the whole of industry.

The central theme of INFO2000 is the development of a European information content industry capable of competing on a global scale and able to satisfy the needs of Europe's enterprises and citizens for information content leading, on the one hand, to economic growth, competitiveness and employment and on the other hand to individual professional, social and cultural development. The programme aims to achieve this objective through three main actions:

In complement to these actions, support will also be given in the areas of market observation, standards and skills development.

Following a number of studies and preliminary discussions, a Green Paper will be issued in 1996 to initiate a public debate on accessing the vast amounts of information held at different levels of the public sector and under different rules for access throughout the Member States. The results are expected to be proposals for legal measures and mechanisms for information exchange and coordination.

In parallel, actions will be taken to identify public sector information areas of particular interest and to assemble information on existing directories and available information content. Guidelines will be established for the production of interoperable and comparable directories. Formats for inventories of public sector data, containing more detail on contents and access than directories, will also be defined and calls for proposals will be published for pilot projects to provide networked interconnection and integration of inventories with asset trading systems for commercial exploitation

Two calls for proposals will be published during the life of INFO2000, the first in Spring 1996, the second in 1997. In each case, the objective is to catalyse the production of high-quality multimedia content and create a European capacity for such production. The action aims to help develop the economy and employment in the electronic publishing industry, accelerating the shift from print to screen, and at the same time help produce that multimedia information content that will itself strengthen Europe's enterprises and serve Europe's citizens.

A major obstacle to multimedia publishing is the multiplicity of different systems for identifying and acquiring rights for the use of content in different domains and in different countries. Following relevant research and development activities under the 4th Framework Programme, theIMPACT programme and the Green Paper on intellectual property rights, strategies for closer cooperation between the different systems will be investigated and calls for proposals will be launched for pilot projects that will lay the foundations for electronic cross-border trading of multimedia rights.


Past call for proposals and tenders


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