Network of Excellence in Internet Science (EINS)

Project leader

Funding source

EU Seventh Framework Programme

Project Details

Start date: 31/12/2011
End date: 31/05/2015
Funding: 5991815 EUR


The goal of EINS is coordinating and integrating European research aimed at achieving a deeper multidisciplinary understanding of the development of the Internet as a societal and technological artefact, whose evolution is increasingly interwined with that of human societies. Its main objective is to allow an open and productive dialogue between all the disciplines which study the Internet systems under any technological or humanistic perspective, and which in turn are being transformed by the continuous advances in Internet functionalities and applications. To achieve this objective, the NoE in Internet Science will bring together research institutions focusing on network engineering, computation, complexity, security, trust, mathematics, physics, sociology, game theory, economics, political sciences, humanities, law, energy, transport, artistic expression, and any other relevant social and life sciences.

This multidisciplinary bridging of the different disciplines may also be seen as the starting point for a new Internet Science, the theoretical and empirical foundation for an holistic understanding of the complex techno-social interactions related to the Internet. It is supposed to inform the future technological, social and political choices concerning Internet technologies, infrastructures and policies made by the various public and private stakeholders, for example as for the far-ended possible consequences of architectural choices on social, economic, environmental or political aspects, and ultimately on quality of life at large.

The individual contributing disciplines will themselves benefit from a more holistic understanding of the Internet principles and in particular of the "network effect". The unprecedented connectivity offered by the Internet plays a role often underappreciated in most of them; whereas the Internet provides both an operational development platform and a concrete empirical and experimental model. These multi- and inter- disciplinary investigations will improve the design of elements of the Future Internet, enhance the understanding of its evolving and emerging implications at societal level, and possibly identify universal principles for understanding the Internet-based world (offline and online), that will be fed back to the participating disciplines.

To achieve this goal, the Network of Excellence in Internet Science will:

Coordinate the investigation, from a multi-disciplinary perspective, of specific topics at the intersection between humanistic and technological sciences, such as privacy and identity, reputation, virtual communities, security and resilience, network neutrality;

Lay the foundations for an Internet Science, based i.a. on Network Science and Web Science, aiming at understanding the impact of the "network effect" on human societies and organisations, as for technological, economic, social and environmental aspects;

Provide concrete incentives for academic institutions and individual researchers to conduct studies across multiple disciplines, in the form of online journals, conferences, workshops, Ph.D. courses, schools, contests, and open calls for innovative activities in this direction.

External Partners

Last updated on 2018-19-12 at 10:07