The European Parliament has held the ‘Innovation across borders’ conference hosted by MEP Frédérique Ries in partnership with the European Jewish Congress (EJC).
‘Innovation across borders’ conference aims to highlight Israeli contributions to innovation and technology.
Ries conducted an interview in conversational formatting with Arye Kohavi, founder and co-CEO of WaterGen, and Irene Abezgauz, co-founder and vice-president of Cymmetria, about the social impact and the benefits their technologies have provided to the world.
Raya Kalenova, EJC executive vice-president, said: “Israel is a Silicon Valley on Europe’s doorstep, a country whose innovative resources are truly remarkable – and beneficial for Europe and the rest of the world. Both initiatives that were debated today are excellent examples of this reality.”
Kohavi presented the device he created to extract drinkable water out of air and how this could provide resources for the 780 million people living in countries which have difficulty in providing water for their population, due to drought, poor infrastructure and strong demand for water for farming.
This new technology could also help to address the challenges related to climate change.
After recent worldwide cyber-attacks, Abezgauz received attention as she demonstrated with concrete examples how to shift the balance of power in favour of defence, aiming to ‘hack the hackers’ and intercept attackers during the reconnaissance phase, reveal them and confiscate their tools.
Her technology has benefited from EU funding through the Horizon 2020 programme.
“Many devices that are key to European citizens’ health and wellbeing, as well as to Europe’s economy, were in fact originally invented in Israel and most of the time, it is unknown to the general public,” Kalenova added.
“Through the EU supporting co-operation with Israel, encouraging collaboration among scientists, many of our society’s challenges can be addressed. And as they do, they will help promote greater understanding between our two societies and greater tolerance and even reconciliation among peoples.”