A real campus for the technopole

Posté mer 22/03/2000 - 00:00
Par admin

Staggered over six years, and financially moderate (230 million francs), the project is based on the two specialities of the NTIC pole : Internet and the mobility.

Will Sophia Antipolis have finally got this big campus that was lacking so much at the beginning ? From now, it can hope for it. In any case, the project is ready. This is the STIC campus plan (STIC, Information and Communication Sciences and Technologies). In 2006, this campus could bring together 4,000 students at the end, and it would get together all the schools and the trainings from which one can graduate, and that are linked to the new technologies. Whatever it deals with those that work on the pure technology, or those that tackle it through another way ( Law, Economics, Management). Even better. This plan, which financially remains moderate (230 million francs of investments staggered over six years) should be included in the next State-Region plan deed. And then, it is especially the matter of an uncommun consensus in the department. Besides, all together, Geneviève Gourdet, the president of the UNSA (Nice Sophia Antipolis University), Marc Berthod, the INRIA director, Christian Tordo, the vice-chairman of the Telecom Valley, Antoine Perry, the company secretary of Eurecom, presented it. In view to show definitely that there had been a process introducing changes (the federation of all the forces) for an exemplary plan (to bring together all those forces in a single place).The pieces of the puzzle are already into place.For Geneviève Gourdet, the UNSA is already definitely involved in Sophia with the ESSI, the ESINSA, the IUT and with some research laboratories as I3S and with some specialized laboratories. What is new is that 'all the forces linked to the NTIC have understood they had to get together. So we are going to coordinate the university, the big research organisms(INRIA, Eurecom), but also the firms of the region, that are concerned by those technologies.We are aware that a single expert answer is not enough. A thought about the I.T. in the company is also needed. So, we wanted to equip the campus with a laboratory of practices allowing this approach both technical and multidisciplinary. The pieces of the puzzle have been already put into place : we are at the ESSI, next to the INRIA and to the ESINSA. We have already the embryo of the campus. Why not also integrating an incubator into it ? What would link university, research, training and firm.'To go faster.Two phenomenons are carrying the plan, Marc Berthod, the director of the INRIA, says. 'The NTIC made a breaking. Behind, ther are the STIC, the information and communication sciences and technologies. The sciences need research to feed the demand in a sector that catches the growth. It is in this area that the job creations are the most numerous. The campus is placed in this gap. Second phenomenon : the mobility. As the convergence between I.T. and telecommunication, now, we are attending a convergence between Internet and the mobility. Which allows us to have a good position in Sophia, to go faster. With the W3S (world wide web consortium), with the research teams on imaging, on the high powers supplied, the protocols, the nets, we are covering the whole line of skill of Internet and of the mobility. By rationalizing the training and research forces as a whole, we are able to expect a speeding up from Sophia Antipolis.'To perpetuate the firms on the site.Why did the firms want to participate to the campus plan ? Christian Tordo, the director of Texas Instrument and the vice-president of Telecom Valley, answered in three stages. One : the intensity and the quality of the relationship between laboratories and universities are the most important factor to perpetuate the firms on the site. Two : the narrowing of the recovery in the years to come, will be linked to the recruitment. One of the current reasons of the recovery on Sophia Antipolis is the possibility to find trained engineers who are needed by the firms. Three : the Telecom Valley association is leading a reflection on the practices. It is wondering about the use of this technology. What will do with the container and the contents ? Two years ago, we were in advance, when we asked for a laboratory of practices. Its creation remains more than necessary. Technology is right. To know how we are going to use it is even better.'THe asset of the mobile telephony.Another chief reasonfor the STIC campus : the rise of Sophia Antipolis in the area of the mobile telephony. An area extremely important : thanks to the presence of the ETSI, Sophia is ahead of an high-tech sector which is the only one where Europe outstrips the United States, with the huge mobility market in view, that is estimated in tens billion dollars. This also leads to career openings for the technicians and the engineers who will just leave the campus.Thus, Antoine Perry, the company secretary of Eurecom says 'phones are becoming a multimedia instrument. With the new UMTS standard, which will replace the GSM, it will be possible to transfer data, pictures, videos on a mobile. The platforms that have to be set up on the campus are aimed to be a place of experimentation and test of the new services on the mobiles (vocal e-mail, reservation services, etc.).'Practically, the campus may need the construction of these buildings. The first (35 million francs), around 2001-2002, with a common centre to accomodate the services of the different actors, the single office for the relationship with the firms (the incubator could be there), the documentation centre, the laboratory of practices, the centre of resources of the new technologies for the small businesses and the small industrial companies (the French PME/PMI). A second building (75 million francs) for the university trainings, and the third (67 million francs) to accomodate Eurecom. Thus, the campus, which is an embryo at the moment, may be a remarkable instrument for the French Riviera. Currently, Sophia Antipolis is looking for a great project for the future. The STIC Campus seems to assert itself, naturally...

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