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Research Areas

Research, development, and standardization at NEC Laboratories Europe provide technologies to various solution areas including, but not limited to, smart cities, public transport, public safety, digital health based on the Internet of Things (IoT), as well as 5G and beyond communication infrastructures.

Within these major areas, we address challenges related to network architecture and management, virtualization of ICT infrastructure, analysing and understanding (big) data for the control and optimization of real-world problems. Last not least, concerns regarding privacy, trust and security of electronic data are fundamental considerations in all of our research.

Data Science

With our leading artificial intelligence technologies, we develop new business and government applications, including personalized advertising, retail optimizations, financial predictions, health monitoring and public safety infrastructure planning.

Our predictive analytics and real-time optimization technologies help bus operators, transport authorities, road operators and automotive companies make transportation systems more efficient.

By combining logic and deep learning, our research has enhanced the fundamental capabilities of artificial intelligence systems. We have overcome the restrictions of deep learning to low-dimensional data structures. Enhanced by innovative representation learning methods, we apply deep learning to systems of high complexity with improved prediction accuracy, high scalability, and a performance suited for low-latency applications.

We enable machine learning to adapt to environmental changes by developing new learning algorithms that can detect environmental changes and adapt their behavior without frequent retraining.

System Platforms for AI and IoT

The Internet of Things (IoT) brings a huge variety of innovation opportunities by connecting physical and virtual objects with the cloud. NLE’s IoT platform has become a part of the European Future Internet platform FIWARE. It enables commercial applications to monitor and control smart cities. Our unique FogFlow technology provides scalability, efficient resource usage, and high data quality for edge-cloud systems. It offers convenient programming models for utilizing advanced IoT platform capabilities, such as AI engines at the edge for distributed analysis of IoT data streams.

As artificial intelligence becomes more commonly used in all aspects of human life, there is a growing need for easy-to-use and highly scalable AI platforms. Our research addresses these needs by building highly performant and scalable implementations of neural networks that efficiently use available resources and achieve top performance on hardware accelerators.


Lack of trust and reliability is often a major barrier for the adoption of innovative, but highly distributed and cloud-based applications.
Our security technologies ensure a chain of trust from small sensors all the way up to the cloud. We achieve IoT security with trusted device execution environments in edge devices and with scalable access control and policy checking at the edge and in the cloud.
With our leading blockchain technology, we provide trusted distributed storage and transactions with high scalability, low energy consumption and unique privacy. We address a wide range of applications, including financial systems and supply-chain-management.

5G Networks

The transition to fifth generation (5G) technologies opens mobile networks to a wide variety of applications and specializations beyond the traditional telecom domain.
We build on our strength in developing mobile technology and virtualization to create networks that are highly flexible and support new use cases for vertical service scenarios in smart cities, automotive communication and industry 4.0. We achieve this by converging 5G technologies with the Internet of things and by using artificial intelligence to continuously adapt and optimize the network.

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