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Building Open Science in Europe: The road ahead for the EOSC community and the EU Member States

On 20 June 2019 the eInfraCentral team gathered 62 researchers from public and private sectors, e-infrastructure service providers, research infrastructures and policy-makers to the EOSC community event. 

The event started with a welcoming word by Andreas Veispak, head of the eInfrastructure & Science Cloud at DG Connect and an engaging key note speech by Professor Urmas Kõljalg, professor of mycology at the University of Tartu, Estonia, who during the last 18 years has been developing online tools for managing open and linked biodiversity data (http://plutof.com).

Alasdair Reid, Policy Director of EFIS Centre and Coordinator of eInfraCentral presented the purpose and mission of eInfraCentral, how it all started and what the original targets were. He stressed the very ambitious agenda of eInfraCentral and our a “relatively small CSA project that managed to succeed all its core objectives and targets over 2.5 years”.

Achievements of eInfraCentral include:

  • Service/Resource Description Template co-designed with leading e-infrastructures and being prepared for the uptake by EOSC (available on GitHub https://github.com/eInfraCentral)

  • The first catalogue of services for EOSC – EOSC Catalogue https://catalogue.eosc-portal.eu/home 

  • The Application Programming Interfaces (API) for the exchange of information from service/ resource providers to the Catalogue portal as well as its provisioning to third party applications

  • “Build-your-own-catalogue” in EOSC-compliant format: service providers can use the eInfraCentral open-source software to build their own catalogue with services added/updated/represented in EOSC-compliant format

  • Collaboration with EOSC-hub and OpenAIRE-Advance in developing the Rules of Participation for EOSC-compliant services and resources and in onboarding new service provider

  • Performance Monitoring Framework allowing Service Providers to share information on some key performance indicators

The overall objective of the event was to take a forward-looking view and discuss the road ahead for the EOSC community in Europe and in the EU Member States, addressing the key issue of digital transformation including aspects such as accessibility, interoperability, and user-friendliness. These aspects are what the eInfraCentral team and the community strove to achieve when developing the tools to support the EOSC Catalogue and the EOSC Portal.

The event provided an opportunity to discuss and debate on broader EOSC issues in terms of, for example, developing the EOSC portal for the benefits of the user communities, building EOSC regionally and nationally, and enhancing the value proposition of the EOSC Portal for the Research Infrastructure community and their users, etc. The questions discussed during the event included: Is EOSC a new infrastructure or a framework for research? What are the most important future elements of the EOSC Portal? How to prioritise “diverse” user requirements? How can researchers get involved to drive the evolution of EOSC and EOSC Portal in particular? Should the EOSC Portal provide a foundation for skill training, e.g. via integration of training materials? Looking into the future, how can the success of EOSC portal be defined from the researchers and other user group’s perspective? and many more.

You can access all the slides from the event and browse through the pictures on the event’s webpage. Or get in touch with the eInfraCentral team to continue further discussions: contact@einfracentral.eu

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