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New cloud research institute in Skåne to reinforce Sweden's mobile technology industry

2013-04-10

Ever since the day when mobile phones were used exclusively for talking, mobile technology has continued to develop at a rapid pace and evidence suggests this is still only the beginning. Today, completely different industries – such as energy, health, mining and automotive – are discovering the opportunities wireless technologies offer. As one example, Ericsson predicts that over 50 billion devices will connect to the internet by the year 2020. In response to all this, Lund University, Sony Mobile and Region Skåne have partnered to create a new research institute: the Mobile and Pervasive Computing Institute at Lund University (MAPCI).

Based in southern Sweden, Mobile Heights is a mobile industry association whose members represent more than 7 000 highly qualified employees and a remarkable breadth of enterprise. Additionally, the association provides business support to innovative start-up companies and coordinates world-class research in hardware (SOS), software (EASE) and applications (NMSA) at Lund University, Blekinge Institute of Technology and Malmö University. This strong research foundation will now be complemented by an institute for distributed cloud technology – a new area combining communications and software technologies. This is one of the key enabling technologies for 50 billion connected devices and the next generation of digital services such as music, news, films and games.

“MAPCI represents a new player in southern Sweden's research and innovation environment, breaking new ground in both its research field and work model,” says Björn Ekelund, Vice President of Ecosystem, Research & Innovation at ST-Ericsson and the institute's acting director. “I am impressed by the force that academia, industry and regional government can unleash when they pragmatically join forces in a common strategy and vision.” Ekelund continues: “The fact that we were able to define and finance the institute in only a few months makes me very optimistic about the institute's future role for both industry and academia.”

MAPCI will take on the explicit role of bridge-builder between the three existing mobile research centres as well as with industry. The institute will be a part of Lund University, but located on the same site as Sony Mobile, Ericsson and ST-Ericsson in Lund. Mobile Heights and Mobile Heights Business Centre will also relocate here, where they will offer their facilities, support and activities to both established and start-up businesses and create an open, accessible arena for the mobile industry. The Swedish Institute of Computer Science (SICS) and Sweden's Technical Research Institute (SP) both see very strong synergies with MAPCI and have decided to partner and are also considering a possible co-location.

The founders aim to contribute in making a minimum of SEK 100 million of funding available for the institute over a ten year period. In addition, Swedish and international research funding agencies are expected to support the institute through collaborative research projects. The creation of MAPCI is a clear example of the implementation of the Swedish Government’s National Innovation Strategy.

The Mobile and Pervasive Computing Institute will be officially opened in spring 2013 in the presence of the institute's founders, partners and hundreds of invited guests from the public sector, academia and the healthcare, transport, automotive, mining, forestry, health, logistics and media industries.

“Sony is very excited to see both Lund University and Region Skåne joining in creating the institute. Sony greatly values Lund's strong, dynamic mobile technology ecosystem and looks forward to the role that the institute will play in Sony's development, innovation and competitiveness in the years to come,” says Bengt-Arne Molin, site manager at Sony Mobile in Lund.

“With our strong position and world-leading research, Lund University, and the Faculty of Engineering in particular, can be a growth engine in society. Together with Region Skåne and Sony we can find new solutions that will benefit both industry and academia. In today’s global, competitive society multiple players must cooperate to address the challenges we face,” says Per Eriksson, Vice-Chancellor of Lund University.

“The institute builds on the world-class, mobile-related research that already exists at LTH. With its novel scope it will break new ground and push the research frontier within both software and communications research and, additionally, make it available to industry in ways that are not possible in more traditional models,” says Anders Axelsson, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering (LTH) at Lund University.

“Region Skåne is very pleased to see what can be achieved when the region, academia and industry work together on a joint agenda. I am very optimistic about what the institute can mean for both the region's incumbent businesses as well as new enterprise, and how it can contribute to making Skåne into Europe's most innovative region by 2020,” says Pia Kinhult, First Governor of Region Skåne.

“Within Mobile Heights, the three existing research centres already make strong contributions to the mobile technology ecosystem. The institute's research theme is groundbreaking but relies heavily on these three world-class centres. With the institute we add a new floor to this house of knowledge, bringing new opportunities to our region, to our member companies, and to new exciting companies,” says Mats Ekstrand, CEO of Mobile Heights.

“With its presence in Lund, SICS has strong synergies with the institute in areas such as internet-of-things, security and communications and we are looking forward to very close cooperation as well as a possible co-location,” says Christer Norström, CEO of SICS.

“This new initiative provides additional force to the ICT sector in the region and in Sweden and provides new opportunities for cooperation and development. It provides SP with opportunities to further develop in this exciting and strategically important area. SP has a strong and growing presence in Lund. It is of utmost importance to make good use of the region’s collected expertise and we feel very positive about this development,” says Maria Khorsand, President and CEO at SP Technical Research Institute.

More information and high resolution photographs at www.mobileheights.org/news

Media contacts

Bengt-Arne Molin, Site Manager Sony Mobile, Lund press contact Lina Andersson, mobile +46 703 11 18 43 lina.andersson@sonymobile.com

Per Eriksson, Vice-Chancellor, Lund University, mobile +46 708 24 71 06 rektor@rektor.lu.se

Anders Axelsson, Dean, Faculty of Engineering (LTH), Lund University, mobile +46 705 61 96 65 anders.axelsson@rektor.lth.se

High resolution photographs of Per Eriksson and Anders Axelsson also at Lund University image bank. https://bildweb.srv.lu.se/login/   Login with user: press   password: press

Pia Kinhult, First Governor, Region Skåne, contact Johan Folin +46 721 99 83 85 johan.folin@skane.se

Björn Ekelund, acting director MAPCI and Mats Ekstrand, CEO Mobile Heights, contact Petronella Warg +46 733 42 49 23 petronella.warg@mobileheights.org

Maria Khorsand, CEO and President SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, contact Niklas Grybe +46 705 715 881 niklas.grybe@sp.se

Christer Norström, CEO Swedish Institute of Computer Science, SICS, contact Kersti Hedman +46 706 224 158 kersti@sics.se