Rima Abdul-Malak, Minister of Culture, and Jean-Noël Barrot, Minister Delegate in charge of the digital transition and telecommunications convey the exploratory report on the development of the metaverse. This mission was commissioned in February and carried out by Camille François, a researcher at Columbia University.
A first commission
The mission endeavors to provide the keys to understanding in order to clarify the debate and seize new opportunities. The government thus wants to understand the risks posed by the metaverse and gather French players around a common horizon. To carry out this study, more than 80 personalities are consulted: entrepreneurs specializing in virtual reality and blockchain, cultural actors, artists, video game professionals, researchers in social sciences, artificial intelligence and computer science..
“This report of the exploratory mission on the metaverses encompasses all the issues related to the development of these new digital spaces and shows the extent to which creators are encouraged to play a pioneering role in determining their full potential, comments Rima Abdul-Malak, Minister of Culture. The Ministry of Culture will rely on these recommendations to support these new uses and implement an ambitious strategy to support the creation, innovation and dissemination of works in these digital spaces.“.
A dozen suggestions
“The Metaverse will be crucial for the future of digital and Web3, France must play a leading role at global level, relying on know-how, world industrial leaders and an exemplary entrepreneurial spirit“, comments Jean-Noël Barrot, minister delegate responsible for the digital transition and telecommunications.
The government report thus mentions several actions such as seizing the metaverse’s opportunity to regain leading positions in global digital services, in France and in Europe. It also aims to initiate work on adapting European texts (RGDP, Digital Services Act, Digital Markets Act) to the challenges of the metaverse. Going forward, the government wants to analyze metaverse value chains, etc guide strategic investment areas and limit the risk of loss of sovereignty or value leakage. On the occasion of the 2024 Olympics, the ministries of culture and the digital transition want to bring together French metaverse actors around various cultural projects and the improvement of the territory and heritage.
The organization of the 2024 Olympics in Paris would bring together French metaverse specialists
The government hopes to bring out various services that allow the emergence of a plurality of metaverses. He wants too fulfill the objectives of cultural and technological sovereignty by supporting both French technological structures and cultural institutions. Another lever for action is to reinvest in the technical standards negotiating bodies to ensure that France and its players participate in discussions on immersion technologies. This mission report also announces support interdisciplinary research initiatives to simultaneously develop experimental metaverses guided by societal needs (culture, health, education, environment) and the means to assess the socio-technical risks through empirical studies.
The government plans to create a computer research laboratory dedicated to immersive art.
That establishment of a research and coordination institute, modeled after Ircam (music acoustics research and coordination institute) is one of the projects. It would become both a computer research laboratory dedicated to immersive art, a place of coordination between researchers and artists for the creation of innovative immersive works in the metaverse, in addition to constituting a counter of excellence for all cultural institutions concerned. Finally, according to this report, the government aims to explore environmentally responsible solutions and develop a system for measuring the environmental impact of metaverse infrastructures.