Dominique Redor, CNAM – Europe faces the delay in the digital economy and AI – Libre proposals

The video was created in collaboration with Spring Economy 2024 “What Europe in a fragmented world? »

Europe lags behind significantly in the digital economy and artificial intelligence. This delay puts it in a position of dependence on GAFAM (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft) and the artificial intelligence companies associated with them.

She is divided faced with the current dominance of American platforms in the markets for European goods and services.

What do we see?

The 27 countries have human resources on the one handand economic on the other, which remain fragmented in a national context, with insufficient coordination and cooperation between member countries.

Indeed, graduates of major European universities and schools, when they decide to try the international adventure, most often immigrate to the United States. In this country, the immigration laws are very favorable to receive highly skilled people in advanced technologies. In addition, the giants of the digital economy offer them very attractive working conditions and salaries.

the paradox is that relatively few young Europeans move to another EU member state to complete doctoral studies or find work.

Annual R&D spending by the 27 States and private companies amounts to €352 billion in 2022, or 2.2% of European GDP, compared to 3% in the United States. But Europe's disadvantage is not only due to insufficient investment in R&D. Indeed, research programs are decided, financed and managed in a national context. On the other hand, the main single program financed by the European budget “Horizon 2021-2027” provides only 14 billion annual credits. And it is divided into multiple projects of small height.

However, in the field of digital technologies, economies of scale are fundamental. The division of the R&D systems of each European country has very negative effects. It is the cause of overlap and lack of synergies, which prevent the emergence of a European digital economy and artificial intelligence.

What can Europe do?

THE answers that Europe can contribute to brain drain and insufficient R&D spending are linked. In fact, these costs are used to train and pay human resources specialized in Science and Technology. The brains they are indeed the main players in the challenge facing Europe.

Mobility within Europe must be made more attractive for young graduates. For this, it is important to increase the remuneration of researchers and experts, especially in the countries where remuneration is lowest, in France and southern Europe.

In addition, there are still many barriers to mobility within Europe that need to be removed. Despite the recognition of diplomas provided for by the treaties, barriers and obstacles remain significant. For example, the procedures for finding accommodation and opening a bank account are far from uniform across member countries.

Above all, the main thing is that the young people educated in our universities and colleges find jobs in Europe that match their skills and qualifications. Only the creation or strengthening of scientific centers at Union level can achieve this objective. Private companies must also play a fundamental role in this realignment. They are also very demanding in collaborations with large university research centers. It is up to European policies and institutions to know how to create the legal, organizational and economic conditions that favor such cooperation.

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