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Catalonia leads international coalition of governments on disruptive and emerging technologies

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Catalonia leads international coalition of governments on disruptive and emerging technologies

  1. The Disruptive and Emerging Technology Alliance (DETA) seeks to maximise the benefits of these new technologies while protecting human rights, democratic values and cultural diversity


  1. This is an unprecedented initiative on a global scale, involving governments from regions and states on five continents, and will focus on five areas: artificial intelligence (AI), cybersecurity, NewSpace, quantum technologies and digital rights


  1. Catalonia, the driving force behind the initiative, will hold the rotating presidency of the DETA in 2024 and 2025, and will organise the first summit of the new coalition on 6 and 7 November in Barcelona


  1. DETA is a Catalonia-led project headed by the Ministry of Business and Labour, in collaboration with the Ministry for Foreign Action and European Union, and with the involvement of the Ministries of the Presidency and Research and Universities

Emerging and disruptive technologies are having an unprecedented impact on society and on how governments deliver services to citizens. The emergence of these technologies can help in the day-to-day life of citizens and in the management of public policies, however, it also poses multiple challenges.


The Disruptive and Emerging Technology Alliance (DETA) is a Catalan initiative that brings together a dozen governments representing some of the world’s leading technology hubs. The initiative is open to governments from regions and states around the world that show a clear commitment to democratic values, human rights and cultural and linguistic diversity.


DETA aims to help alliance member governments make the most of these technologies and adapt their public policies to this new reality. Working in coalition will also allow them to gain leverage in the global debate on technology governance, and in the face of Big Tech and the big international regulators.


This unprecedented initiative has decided to focus on five main areas of work: artificial intelligence (AI), cybersecurity, NewSpace, quantum technologies and digital rights and technology regulation. Working groups will be set up for each of these priority areas which, while led by governments, will involve industry, research and civil society in the respective ecosystems.


The other governments involved in DETA along with the Government of Catalonia are those of Emilia-Romagna (Italy); Flanders (Belgium); Hesse (Germany); Occitania (France); Scotland and Wales (United Kingdom); Quebec (Canada); Costa Rica; the province of Buenos Aires (Argentina); Gyeonggi-do (South Korea); Kyoto (Japan) and the Western Cape (South Africa). In addition, contacts have been made with other governments interested in joining the initiative, which could extend this list in the coming months.


Chairing and organising the first ministerial summit of the alliance


The Government of Catalonia, the driving force behind the initiative, has been chosen by the participating governments to hold the rotating presidency of DETA for the years 2024 and 2025. In its role as president, the Government will organise the coalition’s first ministerial summit in Barcelona on 6 and 7 November, coinciding with the Smart City Expo World Congress (SCEWC 2024), which is also being held in the Catalan capital.


At the end of last year, the alliance already organised two multilateral meetings with some 15 interested governments, and more recently, on 27 February, coinciding with the Mobile World Congress 2024, it held a face-to-face meeting with several government delegations from the coalition present in Barcelona.


DETA is a Catalonia-led project that cuts across several Catalan Government ministries. Thus, the Ministry of Business and Labour is leading the project through the Secretariat of Digital Policies, in close collaboration with the Ministry for Foreign Action and European Union, which will serve as the alliance’s secretariat, and with the involvement of the Secretariat of Telecommunications and Digital Transformation of the Ministry of the Presidency and the Directorate General of Knowledge Transfer and Society of the Ministry of Research and Universities.