The goal of the project proposal is to seek funding in order to expand the research and innovation potential of the Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute (M-ITI) of the University of Madeira through the hiring of an ERA Chair in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and Design Innovation (DI). The LEAPFROG HCI-DI aims at unlocking the full potential of interdisciplinary research in interactive technologies, while strengthening innovation and knowledge transfer activities in close collaboration with local and global industrial partners and contributing to the smart specialization strategy of Madeira. To this end, funding this project proposal will support the following main activities: (i) Upgrade the RDT capacity and capability by expanding the human potential and fostering a critical mass of researchers with inter-disciplinary expertise in human-computer interaction (HCI); (ii) Improve M-ITI’s innovation potential and impact at the regional, national and European levels, through design-driven innovation. Such approach will unravel the impact of open innovation and crowdsourcing on education, training and knowledge transfer, and extend the creative research capabilities of individuals and organizations in the region and finallty (iii) Raise international awareness about the institute and connect M-ITI and its industry affiliates to the global knowledge networks.
As a consequence of these activities we aim to better integrate M-ITI with the European Research Area (ERA) and, in particular, improve the participation of M-ITI and associated entities of the recently created regional system for R&D+I, thereby increasing the level of participation of the institute in the Horizon 2020 program