Chapter 2: The Paradigm of Structural Coupling in Digital Ecosystems
Paolo Dini and Francesco Nachira1 INTRODUCTION European governments at the national and regional level have a mandate by their citizens to promote policies of economic development and of increasing prosperity, innovation and competitiveness. In the last 20 years these objectives that used to depend on a strong industrial infrastructure have been described increasingly in terms of a dependence on information and communication technologies (ICTs). The greater role of ICTs in every aspect of our lives combined with the rise of the importance of the service sector has led us to describe the time we are living in as a historic transition from the ‘material economy’ to the ‘knowledge economy’. The European institutions have a lesser role in setting policies of growth and development through the power of initiatives of the European Commission, including the area of actions and programmes for research and innovation. The Lisbon Strategy deﬁned in 20002 is a good example of such a development plan as well as of how the European Commission sees itself as facilitator in this historic transition: the Presidency Conclusions of the Lisbon European Council (23–24 March 2000) are generally summarized by the commitment to become ‘the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world, capable of sustainable economic growth with more and better jobs and greater social inclusion’ by 2010. The level of achievement of the Lisbon objectives will determine the success of the Commission and of national governments, as well as the quality of life of future generations...
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