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Next Generation Internet Zero

What will the Internet of the future look like? The European Commission's (EC) Next Generation Internet Initiative (NGI) envisions an Internet that is accessible and diverse, and respects the fundamental value of privacy. Here at the FSFE, we believe that Free Software is key to accomplish this vision, so that all people, regardless of their background, are able to use the Internet as an effective tool to achieve their full potential.

Since November 2018, the FSFE has been a partner organisation of Next Generation Internet Zero (NGI0), which is a coalition of non-profit organizations from all over Europe coordinated by the NLnet Foundation. Coming under the overall NGI umbrella, the purpose of NGI0 is to provide financial grants and technical support to researchers and developers who are working on Free Software solutions that contribute to the establishment of the Next Generation Internet. As a part of the NGI0 consortium, the FSFE has concluded the NGI0 PET and Discovery programs between 2018 and 2022.

Currently, the FSFE is working on four more NGI0 programs. You can find more information further down this webpage on the NGI Entrust, NGI Core, NGI Review, and NGI Commons Fund programs.

Next Generation Internet
Free Software is key for the future of the Next Generation Internet.

NGI0 Entrust

The NGI0 Entrust program awards grants to applicant software projects that work to enhance privacy and trustworthiness on the internet, as well as data sovereignty.

We need a more resilient, trustworthy, and open internet that empowers end-users. If we want everyone to use and benefit from the internet to its full potential, the internet must be built on strong and transparent technologies that allow for permissionless innovation and that are equally accessible to all.

This is the goal of NGI0 Entrust: to move beyond the status quo and to create a virtuous cycle of innovation through Free Software, Open Hardware, and Open Standards.

To this end, independent researchers and developers with new ideas and motivated to create core technologies that can help society tackle these difficult but important challenges are encouraged to apply for funding.

NGI0 Core

The internet was never designed with our current modern usage in mind. Important decisions that shaped how the internet works today were made in the distant past, and we continue to run into the consequences: cascading effects and limited resiliences, scalability issues, lack of strong privacy and security, and a blind spot for energy efficiency. These may have seemed less important at the time, but currenty they certainly are not, and we need to act.

The NGI Core program therefore looks for projects that help society tackle the ossification of the internet and other difficult but importnt challenges, each of which has significant social and economic consequences. The program supports new ideas and disruptive core tehnologies, while at the same time evolving and growing existing technologies. Feel free to propose your project for funding opportunities!

NGI0 Review

The NGI0 Review program is a three year support programme offering various targeted services to Free Software projects within the Next Generation Internet Initiative who request support. The goal of this program is to improve the quality and inclusiveness of these projects, and make them more sustainable where possible by supporting the most promising ideas to live up to high standards in terms of security, privacy, accessibility, open source licensing complince, and standardisation.

NGI0 Commons Fund

The NGI0 Commons Fund program builds on the idea that the commons model works, and is continuing to gain ground. Free Software and hardware open standards, open data, open science, the creative commons, and open educational resourcces are democratising innovation and learning, and are togehter driving society and industry forward at an unprecedented pace. Nevertheless, it is also obvious that there are major gaps that need to be fixed. The answer to market failure and dystopian runaway technologies that affect our fundamental rights lies in collective action and public investment.

The goal of the NGI0 Commons Fund is therefore to help deliver, mature, and scale new internet commons across the technology spectrum, from libre silicon to middleware, from P2P infrastructure to convenient end user applications. Only through enough critical mass of shared building blocks and collective resources will our governments, businesses and civil society be able to count on digital security and long term operational availability. The same approach that empowers individuals to take full control of their digital lives, will also steer towards more fair, innovative economices and societies. You can make this happen by submitting a proposal!

Acknowledgements

The NGI0 Entrust program is made possible with the financial support from the European Commission's Next Generation Internet initiative, under the aegis of the Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology. It has received funding from the European Union's Horizon Europe research and innovation programme, under Grant Agreement No. 101069594.

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