European Cloud Initiative




At today’s meeting of the ITRE Committee adopted the report in respect of the European Initiative for Open Clouds for Science. Launched by the European Commission and intensively discussed in the European Parliament is aimed at – among other things – to maximize data sharing in order to make better use of data in the worldwide scientific community, the public sector, private enterprises, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and to develop supercomputers.

Digital data underpins almost every activity in our society and it will do so to an even greater extent in the future. Our banks are already digital, the future of self-driving cars depends on the availability of reliable and secure data and the scientific world will only flourish if researchers have open access to data – to name a few concrete examples.

The immense potential of data as a resource (called Big Data by experts) can sometimes be hard to grasp, but it is real.

BIG DATA OPPORTUNITIES

The European Cloud Initiative launched by the European Commission and intensively debated in the European Parliament aims at – amongst other things – maximising the sharing of data to make better use of data across the scientific world, in the public sector, in private enterprises, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and to develop supercomputers.

The European Cloud Initiative would offer 1.7 million researchers and 70 million professionals in science and technology the possibility to store, manage, analyse and re-use research data across borders and scientific disciplines

If implemented in full, the European Cloud Initiative would for instance offer 1.7 million researchers and 70 million professionals in science and technology the possibility to store, manage, analyse and re-use research data across borders and scientific disciplines.

Science is global. We need to develop the power of European science, not by locking up the results of researchers’ work, but by sharing those results.

From a broader perspective, the economics of data is already there. The EU market for data amounts to 54.5 billion euro (2015 figures from the European Commission). The total impact of the data market was of a big significance as it kept 6 million people employed and this could be 7.4 million by 2020.

OPEN ACCESS TO DATA, BUT WITH FULL RESPECT FOR PRIVACY

According to Michał Boni MEP, EPP Group Shadow Rapporteur on the report on the European Cloud Initiative which was adopted today in the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, there are five key understandings we need to take on board if we want to have European success in the Cloud:

  1. The significance of Big Data development, the role of processing the data, exchanging it, using and re-using open data, under secure conditions, with full respect for privacy rights.
  2. Openness is a value, not a threat, in all areas, but especially in the scientific fields when it comes to the use of data.
  3. Open access to data for all of us – citizens, consumers and scientists – has to be based on rules.
  4. Support for European scientific development, by using Horizon 2020 funds for instance, needs to proceed faster than proposed by the European Commission.
  5. Science is global. We need to develop the power of European science, not by locking up the results of researchers’ work, but by sharing those results – all over the world and in Europe.

The European Cloud Initiative will not only add significantly to the growth of the digital economy in the EU, but also send the important signal that openness pays off in a world where international trade is under pressure and protectionism on the rise

If we get a successful result on the European Cloud Initiative, it will not only add significantly to the growth of the digital economy in the EU, but also send the important signal that openness pays off in a world where international trade is under pressure and protectionism on the rise.