Imagine you lived in Ukraine. Suddenly you’re invaded by military and cyber forces. From one day to the next, one person determines that you’re no longer free to make choices by yourself, your democratic chosen president and fellow citizens. Just incorporated by force: physically and virtually!
This touches me deeply. I feel the urgent need to connect and build a co-operative with a mission to help the Ukraine citizens, while safeguarding our European democracy as this is at stake now! Instead of fighting each other in the physical or virtual space we can build the most powerful force: the (E)Universal Space.
Recently Europe and its international partners have co-funded work done by the open-source community to define the new rules of the game for a digitally connected Europe using Next Generation Internet (NGI) Technology. Driven by digital sovereignty principles that builds an internet of humans.
In order to achieve the 2030 European missions (Horizon Europe in five areas) these NGI services should be included in the indispensable fundamental part to secure our human values in the supporting technology. This is lacking in our digital world today!
Applying Marianna Mazzucato’s mission economy principle there should be a 6th mission.
Safeguard the digital democracy of the Ukraine and any other European citizen and their nation,
Let me take you through the NGI services that were developed and form the key components of a E(U)niversal Space offered to Ukrainian citizens.
It allows refugees to exchange their key personal data needed for immigration services with privacy by design. Key paradigm shift and principle of the Next Generation Internet is that it’s decentral and private by individual user/identity design. The trusted third-party role is replaced by zero knowledge proof (cryptography) technology. You can read more about this in Jaromil’s article.
De-central layer 1 protocol (from centralized to decentralized)
Proposed by PKT’ Caleb James DeLisle. This provides for a way to get around the current Internet Service Provider (ISP) model, which can now be controlled and blocked by autocrats. Using this technology each internet user becomes their own de-central ISP.
Dynamic informed consent service applied to data
This service puts the key of the access to data in the hands of the Ukrainian citizen. In this way the individual provides consent for a specific purpose and can recall their data. They’re able to drive and even stop the processing directly. This is missing now. By implementing the dynamic informed consent service in a secure data space the foundation is made for a trustworthy Health Data ecosystem as described in Sitra’s programme.
Most of the above-mentioned NGI technology is already proven and is part of the Web3.0 free and open decentralized ecosystem. To develop it further testing and deployment at large scale is needed in an integrated data and technology space. The infrastructure to support this is present via the European Open Science Cloud and Gaia-X initiatives that are connected to the Atlantic and other global hubs.
Ideally, we could and should start today..
I see a (near) future where for instance Estonia offers its state-of-the-art eGovernment service platform as a template for Ukrainian citizens that want to be participate in the European Digital Single Market. The advantage of starting with a digital Ukrainian citizenship that is not connected to the place a person at this moment lives, is that it can be applied to all refugees. By registering them via GPP as Ukrainian-EU citizen in the Estonian built eGovernment system, they get a European (eIDAS) supported digital identity.
This allows Ukrainians to work together digitally and work with their democratic chosen leaders. It’s inclusive by design and built with technology with a much higher security protection level than current technology can provide. Digital citizenship provides access to the Digital Single European Market. Memberships like EU or NATO are managed at different levels, as these have a political origin and other collaboration intentions.
Recently the need for a new innovative ecosystem was also discussed in a Stanford webinar. State Media, Social Media, and the Conflict in Ukraine: What Should the Platforms Do? Despite the willingness of all participants to help Ukraine, it’s very difficult to do something, because of the way the social media platforms and their communities are designed.
The New European Bauhaus
Home of the 6th mission.
Support Ukraine in a constructive way. Start now to give them back control in the digital space. Thereby positively enforcing their democracy and freedom of choice in the physical space too! The time is now to safeguard democracy, build upon this blueprint supporting our core common values for the citizens of the (E)Universal Space!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.