Proposed in 2016 by the European Commission as part of the European Cloud Initiative, the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) programme aims to build a competitive data and knowledge economy in Europe. Based on a vision of global Open Science as a driver for enabling a new paradigm of transparent, data-driven science as well as accelerating innovation, the EOSC will offer almost 2 million European researchers and professionals in various fields a virtual environment with open and seamless services for storage, management, analysis and re-use of research data, across borders and scientific disciplines by federating existing scientific data infrastructures, currently dispersed across disciplines and the EU Member States.
Following multiple consultations and engagement processes, the EOSC Declaration was endorsed by more than 70 institutions. The EOSC implementation roadmap, of which the summary outcome resulted from a March 2018 consultation, describes six action lines for the implementation of the EOSC with specific examples and related milestones:
- Architecture: Architecture of the federated infrastructures as the solution to the current fragmentation in research data infrastructures which are insufficiently interoperable.
- Data: FAIR data management and tools. A common data language to ensure data stewardship across borders/disciplines based on FAIR principles.
- Services: Available services from a user perspective. A rich environment offering a wide range of services covering the needs of the users.
- Access & Interface: Mechanisms/interfaces for accessing EOSC. A simple way to deal with open data obligations, or to access research data across different disciplines.
- Rules: Rules of participation for different EOSC actors. An opportunity to comply with existing legal and technical frameworks and increase legal certainty & trust.
- Governance: Governance of the EOSC, aiming at ensuring EU leadership in data-driven science but requiring new governance frameworks.
The European Commission is providing financial support to implement the EOSC by means of projects under the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (Horizon 2020). The various ongoing and future projects that will contribute to the development of the European Open Science Cloud by 2021 can be consulted at this link .