EOSC Portal - A gateway to information and resources in EOSC
The EOSC Future project is developing an operational platform for the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) that will provide access to integrated research products, services, and infrastructures by consolidating and scaling up the existing EOSC Portal. In turn, EOSC will be a key enabler of open science, allowing researchers and research communities to openly and collaboratively share and exploit resources to conduct their research. Ultimately, the EOSC platform will support not only research within disciplines but also interdisciplinary research to address societal challenges such as COVID-19, climate change and biodiversity, and more.
The following article presents the policy and strategy approach for the project, along with the concrete steps being taken to advance policy priorities for open science. Please note that the deliverables linked to these concrete steps and project milestones will be publicly available in May 2022 on the project’s website.
To begin, it is worth enumerating EOSC Future’s high-level objectives, which are codified in the project’s official technical roadmap. EOSC Future’s overarching strategic vision focuses on 3 core tenets: (1) the realisation of EOSC-Core and EOSC-Exchange to create an EOSC platform with interoperable products and services; (2) the integration of products and services from already established scientific cluster communities into the EOSC platform; and (3) the direct involvement of users (researchers and service providers) in the co-design and implementation of the EOSC platform.
It is also important to note that project activities build on other previous EU initiatives linked to EOSC (such as EOSC-hub and EOSC Enhance), not to mention key outputs from the EOSC Executive Board and Working Groups.
Now that we have an idea of the strategic and policy vision, we can examine key project activities, how they will contribute to the realisation of EOSC and, more broadly, the open science policy landscape.
Four components, together, will provide the structural foundation for an operational Minimal Viable EOSC; that is, the core functions required to operate the platform and bring added value to researchers:
EOSC Future will onboard initial resources from the INFRAEOSC-04-2018 projects and INFRAEOSC-07-2020 projects. The procurement call for EOSC in Q3 of 2022 will further support the delivery of the EOSC platform.
EOSC Future is not only building on the outputs of past EOSC projects and initiatives but also aligning with the policies and strategies of key stakeholders in the EOSC ecosystem to deliver a co-designed EOSC platform:
EOSC Future will provide recommendations for the development of the work programmes for EOSC and the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA).
EOSC Future will sign agreements to define the collaboration with the INFRAEOSC-07-2020 projects (EU-funded projects set up to help realise EOSC).
This co-design approach also involves a focus on the users, themselves: consumers (e.g. researchers, research communities, citizen scientists, and companies); providers (e.g. e-infrastructures, research infrastructures, and the private sector); and facilitators (e.g. research funders, policy makers, and administrators). The EOSC Future User Group, which consists of over 300 stakeholder representatives, will promote the active participation and feedback of the broader EOSC community.
Lastly, EOSC Future is developing the EOSC Observatory, which will serve as a policy intelligence tool for the EOSC community to monitor the implementation and uptake of EOSC at national and organisational levels.
The observatory will collect and display data from key EOSC stakeholders via an interactive online dashboard. Featured data will cover:
The EOSC Observatory will collect data via annual surveys which will, collectively, track the annual progress of the implementation EOSC across Europe.
In light of the above, a sound policy and strategy foundation is a prerequisite to ensure that the EOSC environment is aligned and responsive to the needs of various research communities. Looking ahead, the project will publish a series of strategic documents, reinforced by the above-mentioned activities, which can attest to the project’s commitment to furthering open science in Europe and beyond.