Since its launch in 2018, the Quantum Flagship organizes every 18 months the European Quantum Technologies Conference (EQTC), which aims to bring together quantum experts from Europe and beyond. Researchers, engineers, industry and policymakers have the opportunity to share their ideas, know-how, present discoveries, and exchange theories, techniques and approaches, creating a networking environment to push the advancement of quantum technologies to a higher level and position Europe as one of the front runners in the development of these technologies.
The first edition of the event was celebrated in Grenoble in November of 2019. The second edition of EQTC was meant to be an in-person event hosted in the Convention Center Dublin, in the Dublin Docklands, Ireland. However, the global COVID situation ended affecting the organization of this event, postponing it for a year and bringing it back on track and ready to take place in a virtual format under the name of EQTC2021.
Coordinated by the Quantum Flagship together with the Irish Centre for High-End Computing and the National University of Ireland, Galway, as local organizers, this year’s event will be an online event, held between 29th November and 2nd December 2021. More than 600 participants from Europe as well as all over the world have already registered to attend the 4-day intensive.
"We intend this to be the conference of the year"Tommaso Calarco / Chair of the QCN
The first day of the event is dedicated mainly to welcoming all participants to the conference and giving an overall view of the progress in the field within Europe. There will be presentations by the Irish local organizing and government institutions, as well as keynote speeches by quantum experts and a session given by the European Commission addressing the current scenario, the strategies being implemented and the future visions of Europe in quantum technologies.
In particular, Gustav Kalbe, head of the High-Performance Computing and Quantum Technology unit of the European Commission, will give an overview of the future landscape and updates of the European Digital Agenda. It will be followed by a panel discussion about the infrastructures, the industry and how to implement these initiatives in a way that all initiatives work together to unite forces.
The following three days of the event will be dedicated to the scientific advancements in the field. Participants will highlight the most prominent and recent advances across the fields of basic sciences, communication, computing, simulation and sensing/metrology with more than 15 Plenary and Keynote presentations, 27 Parallel Sessions with over 100 scientific talks, 11 workshops organized by different institutions and companies and over 150 posters. These talks and presentations, compiled within the conference program, will address not only fundamental science and research but also other topics including infrastructure development, policy-making, industry engagement and investment through the quantum industry consortium, education & training, encouraging and facilitating gender balance in the quantum community, among others. In addition, there will be a virtual exhibition area, where sponsoring companies of the event will have the chance to showcase their products and services to the attending audience.
Tommaso Calarco, chair of the Quantum Community Network of the Quantum Flagship, emphasizes that “We intend this to be the conference of the year, and set the stage for future events as the quantum flagship grows and moves from its ramp-up phase into a full-fledged “quantum fleet” involving both research and industry, providing quantum technologies and training professionals with highly qualified skills to be deployed for the benefit of European society“.
Irish Minister for Social Protection, Community and Rural Development, Heather Humphries comments “Europe, and in our case, Ireland, is well-positioned to build on our existing successes in information and communication technologies to become a global leader in Quantum research, development and innovation. International events such as EQTC are vital platforms for collaboration to advance this exciting field of technological development. Expectations are high for what Quantum will deliver in terms of technological transformation in the future. Output from events such as EQTC will drive innovation in this area and I wish everyone involved in organising and participating in a successful event this week”.
EQTC envisions becoming the forum for state-of-the-art quantum technologies both in Europe and beyond. Even though many emphasized that there might be hype with quantum technologies, we are certain of one thing; that sooner or later, in some way or format, these techs will become part of our daily lives. It might, or not, take longer than expect and hoped for, but quantum technologies are showing the potential to become a game-changer in the future or our society and EQTC aims to become the forum where these discoveries are made public and available to all.
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