UK Government pushes on with plans for new immigration system despite Brexit stalling

Expat Forum | April 01, 2019

While the visa programme in the UK that will be in place immediately after Brexit is still unclear as Parliament fails to agree what the overall deal should be, the British Government has begun seeking views on the country’s future immigration system. Home Secretary Sajid Javid has announced that over 2019 the Government is engaging across the UK and internationally to listen to the views of a range of stakeholders, to shape the future immigration system. The information from business, employers and education as well as those in the public, voluntary and private sectors, will influence the new, skilled-based immigration system that Ministers want to replace the current freedom of movement programme.

Spotlight

Open government has long been a cornerstone of democracy in the United States. Principles of transparency and an accountable, responsive government are embedded in Federal law and the U.S. Constitution, and the United States was one of the first countries in the world to adopt an access to information law — the 1966 Freedom of Information Act.

Spotlight

Open government has long been a cornerstone of democracy in the United States. Principles of transparency and an accountable, responsive government are embedded in Federal law and the U.S. Constitution, and the United States was one of the first countries in the world to adopt an access to information law — the 1966 Freedom of Information Act.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

Siemens Government Technologies and Network Management Resources Announce Mentor-Protégé Agreement

Siemens Government Technologies | July 29, 2022

Siemens Government Technologies (SGT), Inc., and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) Network Management Resources Inc. d/b/a NMR Consulting (NMR), have entered into a U.S. Small Business Administration Mentor-Protégé agreement to build NMR’s capability and capacity for new projects supporting federal government customers responsible for vital national security missions. SGT is the separate but affiliated U.S. government arm of technology powerhouse Siemens. With project teams across the U.S. and internationally, SGT is a leading integrator of Siemens products, technologies, and software to solve some of the most complex government challenges in energy, automation, and digitalization. NMR has more than 25 years’ experience delivering robust solutions for government customers, including comprehensive mechanical and electrical projects for the intelligence community. SGT helps extend Siemens’ longstanding commitment of supporting small and diverse businesses throughout its supply chain operations. In the U.S. alone, approximately 20% of Siemens’ more than 3,000 suppliers qualify as small and diverse-owned businesses, with well over $900 million of goods and services procured from those suppliers annually. With SGT and NMR providing related support and equipment modernization for infrastructure projects – particularly at Department of Defense installations – the mentor-protégé relationship will support NMR’s access to a broader portfolio of opportunities through the Siemens installed base of energy products and technologies. In addition, the two companies can pursue small business and specified set-aside contracts through a joint venture, using NMR’s SDVOSB status under the terms of the mentor-protégé program. “NMR has been a highly valued partner to SGT for more than 12 years across multiple task orders in essential energy and infrastructure work for critical missions, They’ve shown us – and most importantly our customers – their dedication and commitment to strengthen their capabilities and resources, which is why we’re excited to help them take the next steps in the evolution of their business through this mentor-protégé relationship." -John Ustica, interim CEO for SGT. This landmark partnership with SGT will bring both significant benefits to customers and create unprecedented opportunities for revenue growth and business process improvement, said Dave Jones, President of NMR. SGT has been a longstanding partner with unparalleled customer service dedication, and NMR is looking forward to leveraging the synergies developed by both NMR & SGT to bring together people and businesses to provide our customers a better solution. About Siemens Government Technologies: Siemens Government Technologies is the wholly owned, U.S. subsidiary of Siemens Corporation whose mission it is to secure and modernize the largest infrastructure in the world, the U.S. Federal Government. It does so by being the leading integrator of Siemens’ innovative products, technologies, software and services in the areas of digital engineering and modeling, efficient and resilient energy solutions, and smart infrastructure modernization. NMR, a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), has rigorous program management protocols, vetted project management methodologies, and has developed an advanced equipment procurement program that reduces cost and delivers customer-centric solutions to meet project demands. NMR’s vetted program/project management protocols, comprehensive risk management techniques, innovative procurement solutions, and agile technology implementations have been applied to numerous Federal clients including Missile Defense Agency (MDA), Secure Agencies in the Intelligence Community, and other mission critical DoD entities.

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CYBERSECURITY

ACCORIAN Joins Civitas Networks for Health

Memorial Hermann Health System | July 12, 2022

Accorian, today announced it has joined Civitas Networks for Health, the largest national network of its kind. Civitas is comprised of member organizations working to use health information exchange, health data, and multi-stakeholder, cross-sector approaches to improve health. Accorian is a leader in providing cybersecurity and compliance services, with a special focus on the healthcare and health technology industry. We work with our clients reduce their security risks and assist companies of all sizes achieve their necessary cybersecurity compliance(s). As an external HITRUST assessor firm, we have helped companies achieve HITRUST certification along with SOC 2 and ISO certifications. "With Accorian's focus on heath, becoming a member of Civitas allows us to further that focus with the health collaboratives. We hope to continue working with HIEs to strengthen their security and compliance posture." -Premal Parikh CEO ACCORIAN. Civitas Networks for Health is excited to have Accorian join our national network, said Civitas CEO Lisa Bari. We are raising the voices of local health collaboratives and those providing critical services to support health transformation. From the secure exchange of life-saving data to the accountability of multi-stakeholder initiatives, our member organizations have built the most trusted, connected, and inventive programs to serve their communities. About Accorian- Accorian is full-service cybersecurity and compliance firm that helps its clients with both security AND compliance. Accorian's clients range from start-ups to fortune 100 firms. Founded in 2019, Accorian is an external HITRUST assessor and a PCI ASV. To learn more about Accorian please visit www.accorian.com About Civitas Networks for Health- Civitas Networks for Health is a mission- and member-driven organization dedicated to using health information exchange, health data and multi-stakeholder, cross-sector approaches to improve health. It was formed in October 2021 with the affiliation of the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC) and the Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement (NRHI). Civitas Networks for Health counts more than one hundred regional and statewide health information exchanges (HIEs), regional health improvement collaboratives (RHICs), quality improvement organizations (QIOs) and all-payer claims databases (APCDs) as well as more than 50 affiliated organizations as members and reaches approximately 95 percent of the United States population.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Defined.ai to Play Significant Role in Accelerat.ai, the Government of Portugal-Approved AI Initiative

Defined.ai | June 21, 2022

Defined.ai (formerly DefinedCrowd), the leading provider of data, models and tools for Artificial Intelligence, announced its role in Accelerat.ai, which the Portuguese government fully approved it. Portugal is one of the first European Union countries to implement the Covid 2019 Recovery and Resilience Plan and the Digital Transformation Mandate by the European Union, which Accelerat.ai is a part of. Accelerat.ai is a consortium of Portuguese companies backed by the government, with an investment of €48 million (~$51 million) to speed up the digital transformation of Portugal's public and private sectors. The project, born from the EU Digital Compass 2030 initiative, is financed partly through a €16 billion ($17 billion) award granted to Portugal as part of the initiative. It is also the first of many projects from Portugal's Center of Excellence for AI. The mandate of the consortium is to make it easier to develop trustworthy AI apps and use unbiased data in European Portuguese. Accelerat.ai works on the European Portuguese language problem, which has yet to be effectively addressed well in the field of Conversational AI, especially in the public sector and industry-specific domains as the big tech companies usually focus on other markets. If a developer wants to use voice interfaces in the Portuguese market, they have to use APIs in English or Brazilian Portuguese, which is not what the Portuguese people prefer. Today, António Costa Silva, Minister of Economy and Sea, Sir John O'Reilly, President of the Jury, Thierry Breton, European Commissioner, and António Costa, Prime Minister of Portugal, will officially announce the winners of the public audit and contest, including Accelerat.ai as the winner of a process that began exactly one year ago. Defined.ai will play a leading role in Accelerat.ai, a consortium of companies that includes Talkdesk, Devscope, Instituto Superior Tecnico de Lisboa (Inesc id), Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon, Clarin, NOS, IBM, Microsoft, and KPMG. Interested clients include Caixa Geral de Depositos, Novo Banco, Santander, SPMS/SNS (Healthcare Ministry), AMA (Digital Transformation), Social Security Ministry, EDP (electricity and gas), the Telco NOS, the popular Retail provider Worten, and the Insurance company Fidelidade. Dr. Daniela Braga, Founder and CEO of Defined.ai, was a key player in proposing the creation of a Center of Excellence in AI in Europe and starting the Accelerat.ai consortium and project. (Defined.ai gives AI builders the data they need to train their models.) This ambitious project is aimed at dramatically improving private and public customer service through virtual assistants paired with contact centers as a service in European Portuguese. In its early stages, Accelerat.ai’s goal is to improve customer service in Portugal's private and public sectors and speed up the country's digital transformation. It will develop proprietary technology that can easily scale up to other EU markets since what changes after that is the data. Accelerat.ai will work on a conversational AI framework for modern contact centers that can handle multiple languages. This will improve customer service and cut costs by automating 80 percent of customer support resolutions. It will give customers access to the latest technology in a way that doesn't depend on the cloud provider, infrastructure, or technology. Customers will be able to choose which ASR, NLU, or TTS works best for them. The business model will be based on subscriptions that are flexible and easy to set up. This will make it possible to create 200 highly skilled AI jobs in Portugal. Some of the applications will have a voice and video-enabled avatars that will speak to people when they call the Portuguese Healthcare system to schedule a Covid booster or call Social Security to check on the status of a maternity leave pension. Customer service in the top European languages will be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and at a lower cost. Initially designed to help the Portuguese, it will impact all EU citizens in the future because of its multi-language modularity. About Defined.ai Defined.ai is on a mission to enable the creators of the future. At Defined.ai, we believe AI should be created as we raise our children, with the responsibility to make it the best version possible, to be fair, kind, inclusive and to strive for a better world. That’s why we provide high-quality AI training data, tools, and models to the creators of the future. We offer data scientists the solutions to get it just right, from datasets to bootstrap their models which keep their projects moving, to the final tuning in domains and perfection in accents and phonetics. We host the leading AI marketplace, where data scientists can buy and sell off-the-shelf datasets, tools and models, and we provide customizable workflows that can be used to generate datasets tuned to their needs. And, because the future of AI is complicated, Defined.ai can also offer professional services to help deliver success in complex machine learning projects. Defined.ai has offices in Seattle, USA, Lisbon and Porto, Portugal, and Tokyo, Japan, and has raised more than $80 million in investment.

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