Technological Ecosystems in the Health Sector: a Mapping Study of European Research Projects

  • Alicia García-HolgadoEmail author
  • Samuel Marcos-Pablos
  • Roberto Therón-Sánchez
  • Francisco J. García-Peñalvo
Patient Facing Systems
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Technological Innovations in Biomedical Training and Practice (TEEM 2018)


The European Union has a substantial investment in research and development and demand side-measures in the health sector in order to promote new initiatives, prevent disease and foster healthy lifestyles. In particular, the European Commission and other European entities have funded research projects focused on the use of technology in the health sector. In this context, health research initiatives have evolved from user-centred monolithic solutions into collaborative partnerships of different stakeholders that gather around different technological platforms. In order to identify the lacks and opportunities in this area, a systematic mapping study was conducted with the aim of identifying and analysing the recent research projects developed in Europe related to technological ecosystems in the health sector. The study covered closed European research projects from 2003 to 2018. This paper aims to extend that systematic mapping study through ongoing research projects. The analysis of these research projects provides an overview of the current trends and identify the lacks and opportunities to define new advances in this research area. Moreover, the comparison between the first mapping study focused on closed projects, and the current study, allows getting an overview of the evolution of technological ecosystems in the health sector.


Technological ecosystems Software ecosystems European projects Health sector Systematic mapping Systematic literature review European research 



This work has been partially funded by the Spanish Government Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness throughout the DEFINES project (Ref. TIN2016-80172-R) and the Ministry of Education of the Junta de Castilla y León (Spain) throughout the T-CUIDA project (Ref. SA061P17).


This study was funded by the Spanish Government Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness throughout the DEFINES project (Ref. TIN2016–80172-R) and the Ministry of Education of the Junta de Castilla y León (Spain) throughout the T-CUIDA project (Ref. SA061P17).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Computer Sciences Department, Research Institute for Educational Sciences, GRIAL Research GroupUniversity of SalamancaSalamancaSpain

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