High performance computing, big data analysis, use of artificial intelligence techniques such as deep and machine learning are technological pillars of digital society. 

To this challenge Emilia-Romagna has responded by being a dynamic and performing region with an economic system increasingly active in international markets and featuring a high rate of entrepreneurship, a competitive manufacturing sector, and a strong innovative spirit. 

Its historical ecosystem is ready for the challenges that technology currently offers as a result of a concentration of energy, resources, and possibilities for computing and digital economy. In fact, Emilia-Romagna hosts more than 70% of Italian high performance and high throughput computing resources aimed at supporting industrial and academic research.  

Since 2015, Emilia-Romagna stakeholders belonging to the regional Big Data Community involved in supercomputing and big data production and management have engaged in mapping and analyzing their potential impact on scientific, social, and business domains. In this community, the main actors of the HPC infrastructure ecosystem are: CINECA (the non-profit consortium of 67 Italian Universities, 9 Italian Research Institutions, 1 Polyclinic and the Italian Ministry of Education) and INFN (National Institute for Nuclear Physics). 

The new data center of the  European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), which will allow ECMWF to continue its important work in studying weather phenomena as a strategic element for sustainable economic progress and citizens’ security, will be set up in the Big Data Technopole of Bologna, as the main national and European hub for application of Big Data in relevant fields such as mobility, manufacturing, smart cities, health, and climate.

The Emilia-Romagna Region also supported the establishment of the International Foundation on Big Data and Artificial Intelligence for Human Development, created at the end of 2019. This represents one of the major international scientific institutions to attract talents as well as public and private investments in new technologies. It is a knowledge hub that addresses great socio-economic challenges, from weather forecasts and climate change, to technological innovation related to industry 4.0.
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