According to BITrum constitutional objectives, this Project has been presented at three international research projects calls for financial support: as an European research network (COST), as a theme proposal for the European Science Foundation (Eurocores), and as a internationalizing research (Euroinvestigación). In this process, the network of BITrum members grew, but the heavy administrative work involved left the development of the Project itself not sufficiently attended. The process, even if long and difficult, opens new horizons for BITrum and somehow the first steps have already been given during these months.
As it was agreed in the constitution meeting of BITrum, while the group is being consolidated as a national reference, links with other international nets in the field of information theories should be established and financial support within the European frame should be pursued (see §5 of the founding Memorandum). Even if only as a first approach to the complexities of European calls, our participation has been successful. From their critical evaluation we expect to obtain fruitful consequences at ulterior calls. The objective of contending with competitive projects has been fulfilled as long as it has been taken part in the following calls:
- As proposal for European Cooperation in the field of Scientific and Technical Research (COST). In this case financial support would embrace scientific networking (meetings, conferences, scientific interchanges…). We submitted a COST proposal under the title: “Interdisciplinary elucidation of the information concept: theories, metaphors and applications” as a Trans Domain project, consisting in a first Preliminary Proposal of about 3 pages. Would it have been selected, it would enter into a new competitive phase with more detail. Only 10 persons could stand as proponents from at least 5 COST countries. For this reason not all BITrum members are proponents of this proposal although a mention to the whole group is included within the submission. The proposal, which is accessible to BITrum members in the private site (→access), circulated in the FIS discussion group (FIS, vol. 524 Issue 2-5; Vol 225 Issue 1-4). Any comment, suggestion or criticism is thankfully welcomed and will –for sure- improve future submissions.
- As a Theme Proposal (first phase) of new collaborative research programs of the European Science Foundation (Eurocores). In case of being elected as a Theme Proposal (5 proposals each year are admitted), a new research program of the ESF would be opened, to which distinct collaborative research projects may contend with the support of national finance (2nd phase). Once the participant projects are elected, a third collaborative research phase is entered. Our proposal was presented with the same title as the COST proposal using the acronym EuroBITrum. Access to proposal is provided to BITrum members through the private site (→access). We wish it is known by all members, as we are willing to receive any comments, proposals or criticisms in order to improve further proposals. Inasmuch it is only a Theme Proposal, no budget is included. Proponents should be in this case about 10 persons from at least 4 different countries. However, all BITrum members and working groups were included in the proposal.
- As proposal to the “Plan Nacional de Internacionalización de la Investigación” (national plan of internationalizing research) within “Euroinvestigación” programme of the Spanish Ministy of Science and Innovation (Euroinvestigación), which is associated to the Eurocores programme. The proposal was in this case presented for coordination of the Project “Elucidación interdisciplinar del concepto de información: teorías, metáforas y aplicaciones” (Spanish translation of our proposals to ESF calls). This proposal should be presented by 5 members of the national coordination team and their respective merits, but all BITrum members were included in the submitted programme (as shown in the →accessible proposal).
As already stated, the objective of these three proposals is propaedeutic and preparatory to further calls in the future, since written reports, including detailed evaluation, are expected from all three calls. Again, we count on all BITrum members to contribute to new proposals.
Consolidation of the National Reference Centre on Information
Since national and European financial support for BITrum is a long winding process, we have also presented proposals to INTECO, the institution supporting the I Meeting and the Project since its foundation. In this case, the proposal is akin to the one presented to Euroinvestigación, but with a more limited scope, aiming at satisfying basic needs in the first phases of the Project. This limited proposal was presented under the title “creación de un centro de referencia y red europea sobre el concepto de información: aspectos teórico y aplicados” (creation of reference centre and European Network on Information concepts: theoretic and applied aspects), and it is still pending of resolution.
Probably, the greatest drawback of these proposals is its costs in terms of work and effort that have slowed down BITrum’s activities, in particular the Glossary, for which a more dynamic and efficient collaborative work was expected. Our current aim is to revitalize all activities around the Glossary. Moreover, the special issue of TripleC has been also delayed with respect to its foreseen Schedule. However, we hope to end the editing process of this number during this month.
It is a significant positive repercussion of the aforementioned proposals the further de facto internationalization of the Project, with the participation of eminent researchers such as: Birger Hjørland, Michel Petitjean, Dino Buzzetti and Elisabeth Buchanan. Moreover, BITrum plans to collaborate with the Science of Information Institute (Washington) in common initiatives.
The coordination of the Project cordially thanks the collaboration and help of all members and partners that made possible these Proposals.