Brussels, 14th February 1996

The Rome Conference

  1. Objectives and issues
  2. Structure of the event
  3. Draft Programme

Preliminary workshops

  1. Research and Information Technologies
  2. Regulatory framework and development of communication networks for economic co-operation (only in french)
  3. Needs in the field of education and training (only in french)


  1. Participating countries in the Barcelona Conference
  2. Telecommunications in the Mediterranean

The Rome Conference

1. Objectives and issues

On 30-31 of Mai 1996, the Italian Government and the European Commission, together with the support, indicated by the Italian Presidency, of the Consortium Nettuno, shall organize an international conference on the creation of the Information Society in the Mediterranean countries. This conference has been conceived as one of the follow-up actions of the Barcelona Conference which took place on 27-28 November 1995, which gathered the 27 Foreign Ministers to decide upon the creation of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership. This event involves the participation of Ministers responsible for Education, Research and Telecommunications, entrepreneurs, university researchers and all operators who are somehow associated to the building up of the Information Society in the Mediterranean region.

The Barcelona Declaration and the accompanying Action Plan concentrate on the creation of more efficient information and communications infrastructures so as to facilitate and intensify euro-mediterranean exchanges and access to the newly born Information Society. With this perspective, Ministers have foreseen that a Euro-Mediterranean Conference would take place in 1996 to pave the way to realisation of pilot projects which are to show the Information Society's concrete advantages. The final goal of the Conference is to enable partners to :

Within the framework of the Conference, participants will work out action lines and select a number of initiatives to be developed in the context of the partnership and on methodological bases referring to regulatory premises and development of communication infrastructures, and development of applications connected to research and perspectives in education and training. In particular, the following goals are to be attained:

2. Structure of the event

The Rome International Conference will be presented by three single issue workshops :

Participants to the workshops will be invited as independent experts, even though they may be working in administrations. Invitations will be sent by the workshops' organisors insofar as research and education are concerned and by the Commission in the case of Palerme's meeting.

Each workshop will have a President who will be chosen among representatives of Non-European countries and a Rapporteur whose task will be to report conclusions of sessions.

According to the nature of the workshop, conclusions may include priority action lines or guidelines for research and studies, political recommendations or devices bound to develop in application actions.

A meeting is envisaged on the 8 and 15 May, probably in Tunisia, aiming at drawing up the Conference "theme paper", which will essentially constitute the basis of the debate in Rome.

The Rome Conference will take place on 30 and 31 May 1996 in S. Michele's complex. Invitations will be sent by the Italian Presidency with reference to the Commission.

The Conference's audience will consist of :

Working languages will be English, French, Italian and Arabic. The Conference documentation will be published by the Consortium Nettuno.

3. Draft Programme of the Rome Conference

Opening Speech

i) Presidency

ii) Commissioners

iii) Representatives of Third Countries

1) First session The creation of the Euro-Mediterranean Information Society : infrastructures, initiatives, regulatory principles.

a) Report workshop in Palermo concerning:

b) Round Table:

Premises for the creation of the Information Society, needs as far as communication infrastructures and human resources are concerned.

c) Debate

2) Second Session: The creation of the Euro-Mediterranean Information Society : applications in the fields of education and training:

a) Report workshop in Tunisia concerning : Education and training in relation to the Information Society's opportunities.

Identification of needs;

Proposals for methodological approaches;

Exchanges of information and experiences on projects of transnational co-operation.

b) Round Table:

Promotion of initiatives aiming at providing suitable solutions in the field of education and training. Guidelines for co-operation actions, for instance pilot projects to cope with the Mediterranean region's shortages.

c) Debate

3) Third Session

Research and Information Technologies, priority application fields.

a) Report workshop Sophia-Antipolis concerning:

b) Round Table

c) Debate

4) Conclusions: "Action Plan":

The Information Society in the Euro-Mediterranean context