Virtual worlds: investment and inclusive governance needed in development of virtual and augmented reality

03 May 2023

In its input to a European Commission public consultation on emerging virtual worlds (e.g. metaverses), the European University Association has highlighted that universities are important users, as well as creators, of virtual and augmented reality technologies.

Pointing to the increased use of such technologies in research, education, innovation and culture, notably since the Covid-19 pandemic, EUA’s response notes that is vital that these activities are underpinned by physical and digital infrastructure. Both should enable innovation and safeguard academic values, as well as open standards that facilitate sharing, cooperation and inclusion.

Further developing the higher education and research perspective, the Association focuses on two key aspects:

  • The need for investment, i.e. to ensure that universities have the capacity to develop and maintain infrastructure and to access publicly funded infrastructure, as well as the financial means to access commercial solutions.
  • Governance for open standards, i.e. the development of standards that allow access, interoperability and privacy in an open ecosystem.

The public consultation, entitled “Virtual worlds (metaverses) – a vision for openness, safety and respect”, closed on 3 May.

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