EU Committee

European digital strategic autonomy – realistic ambition or utopia? A conversation with GAIA-X CEO Francesco Bonfiglio

Location: Online Webinar
Access: Members only
Fee for members: 0
Fee for non-members: 75
Since the start of the von der Leyen Commission in 2019, “strategic autonomy” has become one of the guiding principles of EU policy, with a strong focus on developing EU capabilities in key digital technology areas ranging from cloud computing to semi-conductors to 5G and AI. As the EU pursues its post-pandemic recovery efforts and as France prepares to take over the presidency of the Council next January, digital strategic autonomy will remain at the top of the EU agenda in the coming year – with new initiatives on semi-conductors and cyber-resilience expected to be unveiled over the course of 2022.

But what does digital strategic autonomy mean in practice? What does it take to move from ambition to reality, and does the EU have the tools it needs to get there? And how can this agenda be reconciled with the EU’s aim to coordinate its digital policies with its international partners?

Based on his experience as CEO of GAIA-X, the leading European project focused on developing a secure European data infrastructure, Mr Bonfiglio will share his perspectives on these questions and the future of Europe’s digital sovereignty.

We look forward to welcoming you at the Chamber to this exciting event!

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Confirmed Francesco Bonfiglio

Francesco Bonfiglio

Francesco Bonfiglio joined GAIA-X in March 2021 as the new CEO. With more than 30 years’ experience in the business of consulting and information technology, Francesco brings his knowledge of the cloud and data market needs, and his vision on how Gaia-X should revolutionize it. Independent Advisor since 2020, he has spent his previous professional life as an executive in many Italian and Multinational contexts. Formerly Chief Executive Officer for ENGINEERING D.HUB (Hybrid Cloud and Digital Transformation company within the largest Italian System Integrator Group), Vice President for Technology Services at AVANADE and Managing Director within the ACCENTURE Group, Chief Technology Officer for HEWLETT-PACKARD EMEA, SW Factory Director at UNISYS, Technical Director and Methodology Evangelist at RATIONAL SOFTWARE amongst his positions. With a background in Electronics Engineering, he started his career in the late 80s as a HW/SW Engineer working on some of the most advanced Military R&D projects, from the Sonar System for the Italian Navy (ANSQQ14IT) prized during the Gulf war for the mine-hunting performances, to the Eurofighter Fighter Aircraft (EFA), still one of the most advanced examples of technology in the Military field. Francesco had a bottom-up career, covering all roles within the IT, from developer to top-executive, from R&D to business units’ leader. An early supporter of the need for continuous innovation, he is a big fan of the startup ecosystem, active member of evaluation commissions, and being board member and co-founder of FOOLFARM.com, the first example of Startup Studio in Italy.

This event is held under the Chatham House Rule.

It aims to provide anonymity to speakers and to encourage openness and the sharing of information. It is now used throughout the world as an aid to free discussion. When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed.