Blueprint for a European Open Science Cloud

The European Commission recently presented its blueprint for cloud-based services and world-class data infrastructure, giving a major boost to Open Science in Europe, and ensuring science, business and public services reap benefits of big data revolution.

The report, published recently by the EU Commission, is the first report by a High Level Expert Group on the European Open Science Cloud (HLEG EOSC).

The Report recommends that discussions on the ‘perceived need’ of a science cloud be concluded and to take immediate action on the EOSC in close concert with Member States, building on existing capacity and expertise. They also recommend writing clear Rules of Engagement for access to the EOSC and for the provision of services based on research data (e.g. TDM, data analytics, etc.).

But the implications of the report reach further in several aspects of Open Science policy more broadly. They recommend framing the EOSC as the EU contribution to a future, global Internet of FAIR Data and Services underpinned by open protocols, as well as setting up and funding a concerted effort to develop core data expertise in Europe. They estimate that half a million ‘core data scientists’ are needed to make the most of open research data in Europe. Finally, they recommend changing radically the funding model for research data, from traditional and rigid funding schemes of the past – e.g. small and unaccounted part of a time-limited and space-bound grants to an overall co-funded national / EC funding scheme. They estimate that on average about 5% of total research expenditure should be spent on properly managing and ‘stewarding’ data in an integrated fashion.

For more information, see “Realising the European Open Science Cloud” (PDF)

Photo credit: http://www.colourbox.com. Material used in the preparation of this article has been drawn from The European Commission.

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