5 current social issues

Digital society and Information

«Digital technology, a societal issue» as the main title of the 2012 Annual INRIA Report and « Industry 4.0 – How digital technology will affect all sides of your company» on the cover of the Usine Nouvelle magazine (sept. 2013): two examples to illustrate  how much Digital Society is a major challenge for the players of information sciences and technologies in close connection with the human and social sciences. One can understand that this challenge as well as the definition and the resolution of questions about the digitization and/or the effects on privacy, i.e contacts between individuals, relations of the individual and environment, the socio-economic world and the labor organization, etc. This digitization is based on new methods for modeling, capture, treatment, and communication of informations. The collected data could be massive (« big data ») and become a raw material which be processed, unders- tood, analyzed, managed, or created in order to develop new services.  Numerous players are concerned from scientists and engineers to decision-makers, employees, and even citizens. INSA Lyon and its partners act on the entire chain of treatment  processes of data of different  types (measurements, voices, images, texts, etc) from their captures up to the analyses of their uses after processing. The Society based on digital technology implies to work on the issues related to hardware and software as well as using multidisciplinary  approaches such as the ones developed with the IMU LabEx « Intelligence  of Urban Worlds (Intelligence des Mondes Urbains )».

Energy for a sustainable development

This societal issue is directly linked to the French and European policies related to the energy transition. One has to define the future energy mix which will lead to a lower environmental footprint and a better quality of life. Problems link to energy production (resources, environmental im- pact) will be minimized if the energy consumption is limited. Thus, the challenge for Research is to propose solutions allowing to produce clean energy but also to reduce the energy needs. This energy transition requires basic research which is the source of technological developments (e.g. combustion engines, steam engines at the beginning of the industrial  era, nuclear energy, hydroelectricity,  solar energy, wind energy, green fuel…) and economic development. INSA’s laboratories contribute to this energy transition through research work to meet those needs.

Environment: natural, industrial and urban environments

Environmental issues relate to various scales: products with low environmental footprints and respectful to the users, increasing urbanization, natural and industrial  risks, climate change, etc. Education and research activities  at INSA Lyon contribute  to develop relevant and innovative technical and economical solutions allowing to combine well-being of people and reduced pressures on the environment. Such solutions result from the combination of scientific expertise in multidisciplinary  research projects and the development of unique facilities  like technological platforms.

Global health and Bioengineering

The main objectives of the researches performed at INSA Lyon in this field are the development of a welfare scheme efficient at different levels (patient care, organization, etc) and accessible for everybody. This is one of the highest priorities in our Society. To answer these societal issues, the INSA Lyon Research offers conceptual and methodological  solutions in numerous health and bioengineering  fields. Four areas of excellence were identified covering the whole health chain, i.e. from basic researches concerning studies on model organisms such as microorganisms, insects, etc. to the design of new molecules and medical devices, diagnostics, and the organization of the welfare  schemes. These researches aim at proposing a more efficient  care system at the clinical, social, and economical levels.

Transport: structures, infrastructures, and mobilities

The INSA Lyon expertise in the field of transport was developed in close collaboration with the Industry at the local, national, and European levels. Today, the research in this field is very challenging and diverse for all the partners in the Society. In particular, the reduction of the environmental footprint of transport, the goal to maintain the competitiveness of the transport industry as well as the mobility policies need to be taken into account for development of relevant researches.
Transport combines very different trans-disciplinary approaches for which the technological and management advances will be issued from strong interactions between scientific disciplines.
INSA Lyon offers well-recognized expertise in engineering which could allow to bring additional scientific value from the components and technologies to the management of the transport systems. These competences could be sketched as a triptych: vehicle – infrastructure – uses, illustrating both excellence in scientific disciplines and innovative multidisciplinary approaches.