Addressing the needs and specificities of key research communities, disciplinary and Thematic Clouds are at the very base of the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC). To ensure exploitation and cross-pollination of scientific data and provide researchers with access to innovative data analytics tools and services, a variety of European research infrastructures and e-infrastructures joined forces into thematic initiatives, and towards the co-creation of a common EOSC.
With these objectives, five cluster projects were launched in early 2019, namely ESCAPE, ENVRI-FAIR, SSHOC, PaNOSC and EOSC-Life. These five initiatives gather projects from the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) and European Landmarks, to cover the scientific domains of Astronomy and particle physics, Environmental research, Social Sciences and Humanities, Photon and Neutron research, Life sciences. The future of EOSC is strongly linked to the close collaboration between these communities and the EOSC Governance and to the uptake of the resulting thematic e-infrastructure platforms.
In February 2020, one year after the start of their activities, the ESFRI Cluster Projects published a series of Position Papers, stating their views and expectations on the EOSC and the contributions of ESFRI to the European data infrastructure. These papers were then collected and harmonised by the EOSCsecretariat.eu, in a comprehensive booklet available for your consultation on Zenodo: https://zenodo.org/record/3675081
Among the commonalities that emerged from the report it’s worth mentioning the need to leverage domain expertise, better drive the innovation which research communities require and enhance scientific research through interdisciplinarity and cross-cluster interaction.
Not only ESFRIs: ensuring full coverage of scientific areas with a tradition of research data sharing and services, other thematic clouds were launched in 2019 and 2020 in the sectors of transport, food, marine, health and earth-observation.
Opening the way for the other sister initiatives, Blue-Cloud, the thematic cloud on Blue and Marine research, was the first to follow the example of the ESFRI Clusters by disclosing its statements on the EOSC. Published in March 2020, the Blue-Cloud Position Paper summarises the project's views, messages, and contributions, for the benefit of the EOSC Governance, the European Commission, and all other parties involved in the development of the European Open Science Cloud.
The Blue-Cloud Position paper is available for consultation here: https://www.blue-cloud.org/news/blue-cloud-position-paper-eosc