The focus on a digital economy puts the Baltic region on the top of the list of innovative areas in Europe manifesting in a high condensation of national and regional science and technology parks, incubators, start-ups, and innovation centres which are spurring disruptive entrepreneurship environment. As a result the entities in the region develop many pioneering concepts to support e-governance and digital data management solutions, including on the intersection of Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Earth Observation. In this context, this ecosystem represents an opportunity to support innovative EO-driven science, applications and information services to face some of the pressing issues, while at the same time catalyse innovation and growth in the Baltic basin.
The objective of the ESA Baltic Regional Initiative is to enhance the use of state-of-the art European satellite missions (ESA and European missions) to support definition and cooperative implementation of regional priorities in the Baltic, in line with national policy objectives in the context of the EU legislation, national legislation as well as the Helsinki Commission (HELCOM) framework. The partners to this initiative therefore strive to achieve measurable progress in embedding EO derived information into the strategies and cooperation actions within the Baltic, and enhance and promote the use of the EO platforms capabilities for regional-scale processing, data fusion and information delivery.
The priority activities for the Baltic Regional Initiative are based on a road map agreed with stakeholders through dedicated Baltic from Space workshop (Helsinki, 29-31 March 2017). Regular follow-on workshops will be organised, tentatively every 18 months, as the ESA-funded developments progress.
The first workshop aimed at, among others, reviewing and discussing the existing scientific knowledge gaps and priority applications. The recommendations of the workshop are available online as a report.