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Technologies old and new are propelling the current wave of innovation around the world. Artificial intelligence, robotics, and machine learning are all gaining new ground and being deployed in a wide variety of contexts globally. One of the more cryptic but oft-hyped technologies is Blockchain, an emergent technology developed as part of Bitcoin, the cryptocurrency invented in 2008. Whereas Artificial Intelligence and robotics innovations seem to have a dark side, many perceive Blockchain technology as a platform for positive and even radical change.

Exploring the relevance of new technologies to address existing socio-economic gaps and support internationally agreed development targets including the globally-recognized Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is critical. The question for developing countries is not only how this could be workable but also who could be involved in harnessing Blockchain technologies to close development gaps. In the realm of international development, blockchains are already improving livelihoods, facilitating good governance, and helping establish rights among poor communities. Understanding the technology itself is less important than understanding its enormous potential for public and global good.

The Blockchain for Development Forum, organized by DevelopmentAid is a one-day event that brings together the technology implementers, innovators and influencers in Blockchain and DLT, alongside with delegates from MDBs and other international organizations, senior decision makers and stakeholders, to discuss the potential of this industry-changing technology.

Does Blockchain technology really possess the potential to transform international development sectors ranging from education to health to agriculture? Can it offer tangible value beyond digital currencies? This event will attempt to cut through the hype and evaluate the potential of this technology on everything from remittances to supply chain management, voting practices, smart contracts, land titling, educational credentialing, health record storage, and more. We will also consider policy and regulatory frameworks, validation models, security concerns, limitations of access/digital literacy, and the many other constraints facing this nascent movement. Meet and share the experience with your potential partners/investors/donors with an interest in the intersection of Blockchain and international development.

The conference will take place in Belgrade, Serbia on September 27-28, 2018.

As every year, the organizers SEETB and Quality House strive to invite highly recognized industry specialists, who can really teach the attendees a lot about testing. Because what is life if not a constant learning process! But they also try to be inclusive and give a chance to everyone motivated enough, who has something interesting to say in out session panel.

Attendees of the conference will have the pleasure of listening to Erik van Veenendaal and Paul Gerrard give their inspiring keynotes, as well as tutorials on the topics of Requirements Engineering and Digital Test Management respectively. Other tutorials include noted professionals Mette Bruhn Pedersen, who will talk about Typical Challenges when scaling Agile, Olivier Denoo who will be exploring what exactly users want, Vipul Kocher, who will be revealing the Basics of AI and AI in Testing, and Yaron Tsubery, who will lead us through the Basic Practical Principles of Load and Performance. Some of them will also be giving pre-conference courses – a great way to learn from the best, so sign up for them too!

Additionally, the organizers have lined up a whole bunch of great session talks too! The Program Committee worked long and hard to choose the best entries from the Call for Papers campaign – they are proud with their work and hope that you will be pleasantly surprised too!

It all sounds so exciting, doesn’t it? So don’t miss the chance to learn from the best – get a ticket for SEETEST 2018! Now you can get 20% off tickets for the conference thanks to the Early Bird campaign. But don’t wait too long, as tickets are already selling fast.

Sign up here.

The official program for SEETEST 2018 is out!

ARIES Transilvania is a supporting organization of South East European Software Testing Conference SEETEST 2018 which will take place in Belgrade, Serbia on September 27-28, 2018.

After the great success of six previous editions of SEETEST in Bulgaria and Romania, the prestigious conference in the area of Software Testing and Software Quality Management will take place in Belgrade for the first time. The event rotates in different Balkan countries and gathers more than 300 IT professionals, software testing experts and well-known speakers every year.

The conference will be preceded by full-day courses on September 26, 2018 where the participants will get hands-on training in small groups in Software Testing’s latest concepts.

SEETEST 2018 will cover topics like Security Testing, Mobile Testing, Test Automation, Cloud Testing and many more current trends in the area of Quality Assurance. The conference format will be three parallel half-day tutorials in the morning and three tutorials in the afternoon on September 27. The Tutorial speakers at SEETEST are internationally recognized testing experts with tons of practical experience.

It is followed by one day of keynotes and presentations on September 28. Prospective authors are encouraged to submit papers for evaluation by the Program Committee. The Call for Papers will be opened by April 15. The Organizers SEETB and Quality House guarantee that all papers will be subject to a “blind review” by at least two members of the Program Committee, on the basis of relevance, originality, importance and clarity.

SEETEST offers countless networking opportunities at the conference itself but a great addition is the Social event. It is specially designed in a format that allows attendees, sponsors and speakers to network and enjoy the evening.

The Serbian capital will host the event at the heart of New Belgrade business district in the luxury four stars hotel Crowne Plaza.

Save the dates and take advantage of discounts for early registrations! For more information, please visit the conference website.

The National Study of the IT & C Market was initiated by ARIES Transilvania and iTech Transilvania Cluster by ARIES T, with the support of Cluj-Napoca City Hall and Local Council and it contained an analysis at national level and also a comparative analysis on the companies from urban centers in Romania (Cluj-Napoca, Bucharest, Iasi, Timisoara, Brasov and other counties), on a period of 6 years (2011-2016). Within this study were defined through 9 NACE codes.

Based on the IT study, developed by iTech Transilvania Cluster by ARIES T, the number of IT companies increased between 2011-2016, from 9.823 to 14.339, forecasting that it will exceed 17.000 at the end of 2017. In the past 6 years, there were registered with almost 50% more companies with an informatics profile. At the same time, the amassed turnover of IT companies doubled in the last 6 years, in the context where the IT sector is gaining an upper hand in the national economy, exceeding, along with the communication technology sector, 6% of PIB.

The evolution of IT at a national level is a significant one: in 2016 we had 14.339 companies with over 100.000 employees, their number increasing with 75% in the past 6 years. The increase in start-ups indicates the apparition on the market of young entrepreneurs, the promotion of new ideas and a new attitude in business.

The ability of these start-ups to survive to such a high competition, is one of the stakes of the IT market, stake which attracts the interest of all specialists, being one of the goal to succeed in this field. The business ability developed by IT companies is obvious by the doubling of the total turnover in the past 6 years. A market with almost 5 billion Euros represents an important segment in any prevision. Evolving in the same rhythm as the other development centers of the IT sector (Iasi, Timisoara), Cluj-Napoca succeeded to rank itself higher in the last years, reaching an amplitude which allows it to consider itself the main IT business pol, after Bucharest.

The number of IT companies in Cluj-Napoca increased with over 75% in the last 6 years, more over the national mean, and if we take into account the newly established companies on governmental programs such as “Start-up Nation”, we can already talk about the doubling of this number. Another characteristic which individualize this IT center, we can mention the amount of software producing companies, which are more than the national average.

In the 1.235 IT companies from Cluj, work 14.036 employees, representing 8.7% from all employees in Cluj-Napoca, so, 1 out of 11 employees work in IT and if we take into consideration other forms of collaboration, the number of employees in IT exceeded 20.000 at the end of the year 2016.

“This study is a valuable tool for companies, for public administrations, for Universities, and, why not, even for citizens, being a professional and relevant study to be taken into consideration when you organize medium and long term strategies. The results from a community are visible only when all members shake hands and work together towards development. In Cluj, we accepted the proposal of the Consultative Council for Entrepreneurship and IT – developed to offer the city an updated strategy of Smart City, which, after implementation, we will be able to solve a lot of the city’s problems. The apps offered by the IT companies bring closer the administration to citizens but also international recognition in the impact sectors” – Emil Boc, Mayor of Cluj-Napoca

At a national level we can see a trend in the decreasing of the number of small companies with 1-4 employees and an increase in the number of companies with no employees at all. If in 2011, 27% of companies had no employee, in 2016 this percentage increased to 35,5% from the total number of IT companies. This is a worrying trend because the degree of hiring is dropping. Therefore, more and more IT companies find it hard to find new work force and more and more IT employees or experts go for establishing their own company, reflecting the increase of start-ups.

“We tried, as a professional IT cluster and association to change the work paradigm. We believe that is more important to stop waiting for solutions from the public authorities but to cross that extra mile ourselves, going towards authorities with openness and work force able to take under the challenges of the market, walking towards innovation instead of outsourcing” Voicu Oprean – President of ARIES Transilvania and CEO of AROBS Transilvania Software

”The partnerships initiated and encouraged by ARIES T in our community, transformed Cluj into a lab, by the participation of experts from companies to finding solutions to the city’s problems and by piloting and testing them in real live. We become a “living lab” – a concept of open innovation applied in some of the most innovative capitals” Bianca Muntean – Executive Director, ARIES Transilvania, iTech Transilvania Cluster.

Between 2011-2016, the number of start-ups almost doubled (from 1.806 in 2011 to 3.795 in 2016) and their percentage increased from 18.4% in 2011 to 26,5% in 2016.

The final report of the Study of the IT & C Sector in Cluj – National Comparative Analysis, 2017 is available at the following address: The study was developed by Encore Research under command of ARIES Transilvania, iTech Transilvania Cluster, with the support of Cluj-Napoca City Hall and Local Council.

For more information:

Bianca Muntean, Executive Director ARIES Transilvania, iTech Transilvania Cluster
Phone: 0742-225.405