On 10th of November, BroadMap organised in Brussels its dedicated BroadMap Stakeholders’ Workshop, where practitioners were invited to hear about the state-of-play of the project and share their views on a number of key issues related to the future evolution of EU broadband applications and interoperable radio communication solution. About 60 participants from 16 countries attended this event, representing a large community of PPDR practitioners.
On this occasion, the European Commission Project Officer responsible for the project, Mr Christoph Castex, stressed that BroadMap is a flagship project for DG HOME, in particular in the context of the creation of an effective Security Union. He welcomed the progress of the project so far.
The Workshop was the opportunity to inform practitioners about the different stages of the project, from requirements consolidation, stemming from the largest consultation of PPDR organisations ever carried out, to the current transformation of these requirements into technical specifications. Participants were also updated on the state of play of the definition of solution options and organization schemes and on the next steps of the project, in particular the adoption of transition roadmaps.
The practitioners were also invited to give their opinions during debates which took place in the course of the Workshop. Participants discussed the opportunities and new capabilities offered by interoperable mobile broadband systems and stressed the need to ensure that responsible national authorities do allocate the right frequencies for PPDR users (700 MHz). They also discussed the essential features to be offered by communication devices and warned against the difficulty to handle a too big stream of information on the field, calling for the development of user-friendly interfaces. Practitioners also observed that the lack of interoperability between the systems used in the different Member States was a strong barrier that the next generation of communication tools will have to overcome. They finally stressed the need to focus on the question of standardisation and keep reflecting on what will be the needs of tomorrow.
In its closing address, David Lund, BroadMap Coordinator, stressed once again the importance of this project and thanked all partners for their collective work and dedication to make BroadMap a success. He said that the consortium had demonstrated its capabilities to carry out outstanding work and answer the demands of the European Commission. He welcomed the fruitful discussions and the outcomes of the workshop, as well as the expressions of interest from a growing number of countries for the preparation of the next steps.