EOSC enables open science in Europe

The European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) is an initiative from the European Commission, aimed at developing a virtual environment for sharing and reusing research data. The Swedish Research Council represents Swedish interests and priorities in the EOSC Association.

What is EOSC?

The ambition of EOSC (European Open Science Cloud) is to develop a “Web of FAIR data and services” that makes it possible to share research data across national borders and research disciplines in Europe. Researchers, innovators, businesses and citizens will be able to publish, find and reuse tools and services for research, innovation and education. The policy agenda for the new European Research Area highlights EOSC External link. as an important action for achieving the goal of open science.

EOSC shall link together and continue building on solutions and infrastructures that are already in existence in the EU countries, and in this way provide services for storage, management, sharing, analysis and reuse of research data. Data shall be coordinated, so that they fulfil the FAIR principles, that is to say are Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable.

What does EOSC entail for the research community?

EOSC shall make it possible to continue to build on previous research by creating the conditions where research data can be reused. New research questions can be raised, and collaboration across national borders and scientific disciplines can be facilitated. In this way, research is driven forwards, and EOSC will make this possible, by:

  • Developing practices and skills for open science, and working towards normalising open science.
  • Developing joint frameworks for methods and infrastructural services for collaboration and sharing FAIR research data.
  • Linking together and further developing existing infrastructures so that research data can be shared and used.

The development of EOSC is relevant to Sweden’s work on open access to research data in several different ways. One example is our work on national guidelines, recommendations and principles for open access to research data, another is the work on anchoring and coordination at national level in terms of features such as interoperability, standards, and best practice.

How EOSC is organised

Since 2021, EOSC has been a partnership programme under Horizon Europe, the EU’s new framework programme for research and innovation. The partnership is governed by three parties: the European Commission, member states (including associate countries), and interest organisations. They work together to realise EOSC through a common framework for implementation (the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda, SRIA).

The European Commission contributes to the partnership through calls within Horizon Europe.

The EOSC Association and the EOSC Steering Board

The EOSC Association was established in December 2020, with the aim of enabling stakeholder organisations to participate in the strategic development of EOSC.

Mandated organisations are appointed by the member states to represent national interests in the Association. The role of the mandated organisations is to provide input that is relevant for the broader engagement within the national research systems to the EOSC Association, and vice versa.

The Association has also established Advisory Groups and Task Forces to support its work. These groups focus on overarching themes of importance for the realisation of EOSC.

The EOSC Steering Board is the expert group where representatives from member states and associated countries participate. The expert groups give strategic advice to the European Commission and contributes to the alignment of national and European policies and investments.

Swedish participation in EOSC

Several Swedish organisations are involved in the development of EOSC, as members of the EOSC Association, as participants in the EOSC Association’s task forces, and as participants in projects funded under the European framework programmes for research and innovation, Horizon 2020 and, more recently, Horizon Europe.

The role of the Swedish Research Council

The Swedish Research Council has been appointed as a mandated organisation by the Swedish Government, and represents the Swedish research system’s interests in the Association. In our role as expert agency, we also support the Government in an advisory role in its work on the EOSC Steering Board.

The Swedish Research Council has appointed an external reference group for our national and international work on open access to research data and EOSC.

Getting involved in the EOSC

Organisations that want to be part of and influence the development of the EOSC can apply for membership of or observer status in the EOSC Association. Read more on the EOSC Association’s website External link.

It is also possible to get involved in EOSC through the EOSC Association’s Advisory Groups and Task Forces External link.

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