September 2022

A new project joins the EOSC family! Since May 2015, the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) ecosystem collects research data and services and aims at being the main data space for science, by federating existing research and data infrastructures in Europe and realising a web of FAIR data for science, in line with the European Strategy for Data

Along with the other recently funded EOSC projects, FAIR-EASE has embraced the EOSC co-branding, an initiative to unify EOSC branding and avoid confusion amongst stakeholders. It doesn’t stop with the branding, FAIR-EASE will maintain constant contact with the EOSC association and other EOSC projects to make sure that all are working together to achieve the goals set out in the EOSC Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA).

In the current phase, EOSC efforts are focused on bringing together scientific communities in a multidisciplinary effort, and that’s where FAIR-EASE comes in. 

In a world where all societal and scientific challenges are intertwined, there is an urgent need to launch multidisciplinary initiatives and projects to allow collaboration among scientists from different domains. Machine-actionable services can be useful, in this context, to allow optimised calculations with various sources of scientific artefacts that have to be both open and understandable by the machine. Gateways between metadata standards become essential, to allow the matching of data representations designed for different domains: this is the focus of FAIR-EASE, which has been structured specifically around the requirements from multiple Earth and Environmental Science disciplines, and their thematic research infrastructures.

The study of earth and environment, in fact, requires a large panel and volume of heterogeneous data, which are currently still managed and preserved separately in domain-dependent repositories. Although both national and European infrastructures are dedicating more and more attention to their level of FAIRness, that does not mean that the data is homogeneous, and metadata and data still need a lot of work in terms of mapping, processing and conversion in order to become usable in cross-disciplinary applications. In the specific case of the earth systems domain, this work is even more essential, considering the fact that earth systems are, themselves, highly interconnected and so are their domains of study.

FAIR-EASE has the ambitious objective of overcoming the data fragmentation by developing and operating distributed and integrated services for the observation and modelling of the earth system, environment and biodiversity. 

Close cooperation with user communities and research infrastructures will help the consortium to:

  • Improve a FAIR-EASE data discovery and data access service, relying on existing services, in order to provide users with an easy and FAIR service for discovery and access to environmental multidisciplinary and aggregated data-sets as managed and provided by a range of European data infrastructures; 
  • Set up a FAIR-EASE Earth Analytical Lab, with EOSC connectivity supporting, through web-based interfaces (Virtual Research Environment, VRE), processing tools (Virtual Data Analysis Platform, VDAP) and on-demand data visualisation services, to facilitate remote analysis and processing of heterogeneous data for both data analysts and scientists at large. 

A number of multidisciplinary Use Cases (UCs) will contribute requirements for the FAIR-EASE system components and to validate and demonstrate the capabilities of the FAIR-EASE system for supporting open science. 

 

About the project

FAIR-EASE “FAIR EArth Sciences & Environment services” is funded by the European Commission Horizon Europe programme. Coordinated by CNRS and supported by 25 additional partners, the project officially started on the 1st of September 2022 and met for the kick-off hybrid event in Paris  from 20 to 22 of September. 

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Davide Di Cioccio
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