Sofia University is the oldest and largest university in Bulgaria. Since its establishment has always played a very important role of the most prestigious educational and scientific hub in Bulgaria. SofiaUni is the only Bulgarian university to feature in the QS World University Rankings 2016/17, in the 651-700 range (ranked 46th within the EECA QS University Rankings). Bulgarian University Rating System (BURS) 2017 , ranks SofiaUni first in overall and especially in ICT. With regard to graduates’ realization and the labour market, SofiaUni (through its Faculty of mathematics and Informatics - FMI) trains specialists with the highest average income among graduates in Bulgaria, as ICT graduates hold the leading position. FMI is according to BURS is “the best Bulgarian faculty in ICT” and a regional leader in ICT education and research. FMI is admitting the most talented and ambitious students - national, EU and even world champions in ICT and mathematics and is the “best producer” of specialists in advanced technologies for Bulgarian industry. The faculty also demonstrates a solid research potential and has gained international recognition with more than 130 national and 40 EU Projects.
Recently SofiaUni has experienced some serious problems closely related to the general socio-economic and research environment in Bulgaria. SofiaUni team will improve its research capacity, in area of high social impact – Big Data, will integrate better in ERA and will increase its innovation potential.
Chalmers University of Technology is a leading university in Sweden and EU with strong and well developed research and collaborations in Big Data and related areas. Through its labs, leading researchers and visiting lecturers, Chalmers will be the main training hub for the researchers and engineers of Sofia University visiting Sweden under the project.
Chalmers conducts research and offers education in technology, science, business and architecture with a sustainable future as its global vision. Situated in Gothenburg, Sweden, Chalmers has 13 departments with 10,300 full-time students and 3,100 employees. Chalmers is strong in the related areas of Big Data, Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, with several ongoing and planned initiatives in these areas, including WASP, CHAIR and AI Sweden (see below). Chalmers is particularly well-known for providing an effective environment for innovation. The FET Flagship Graphene Flagship, a FET Flagship initiative by the European Commission, is coordinated by Chalmers. Chalmers’ activities in GATE are led by the Department of Computer Science and Engineering (CSE). CSE is strongly international, with about 70 faculty and 70 PhD students from over 30 countries, and has extensive national as well as international collaboration with academia and industry including, e.g., Volvo, Saab, Ericsson and RUAG Space, and many small ICT companies. CSE is partner in the Center of Excellence for Global Systems Science (COEGSS), a Horizon 2020 project with 8 leading research organisations. Located on Chalmers campus, CSE is organisationally an integrated department with staff employed at Chalmers or at the University of Gothenburg. CSE’s research and teaching activities comprise, e.g., education programmes and common courses for students of both universities, and common research groups.
CSE is a major player in the Chalmers’ ICT Area of Advance (ICT AoA), the ecosystem of thematic platforms for long-term collaboration that target specific challenges, often directly relevant for industry and society, also offering common access to cutting-edge research infrastructures, as well as to several targeted centres. ICT AoA supports exchange of expertise across scientific disciplines, between students and teachers, and alongside partners from industry and society, thus mobilizing all aspects of operations and creating benefits for all.
Chalmers Industrial Technology (CIT) is a non-profit organization, a recognized expert in supporting and stimulating the collaboration between industry and universities and in managing contract research and collaboration projects with industry on commercial terms. CIT mission is to provide research expertise and innovation for commercial and societal impact. Since its founding in 1984, CIT’s track record includes commissions on five continents, activities in 49 countries and more than 1800 customers. Today, CIT has approximately 90 employees and a turnover of 11 M EUR per year. CIT is also involved in the of Graphene Flagship Initiative, one of the biggest ever research initiative in the EU with a total budget of 1 billion EUR.