In 2016 the European Commission launched the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) to provide a virtual environment with open and seamless access to services for storage, management, analysis and re-use of research data, across borders and disciplines. Blue-Cloud, as the « Future of Seas and Oceans Flagship Initiative’ of EU HORIZON 2020 programme, is the thematic EOSC for the marine domain. Blue-Cloud developed a collaborative web-based environment in support of the EU Mission Oceanthat, that enables open science, providing simplified access to an unprecedented wealth of marine data resources and interoperable tools.
Blue-Cloud innovative core services are deployed through a smart federation of leading European marine data and eInfrastructures, bringing an unprecedented amount of multidisciplinary data repositories, analytical tools, and computing facilities to EOSC. The Data Discovery & Access Service (DD&AS) provides a successful example of data federation, crucial for the long-term objectives of EOSC. It enables researchers to retrieve data from marine infrastructures including SeaDataNet, EMODnet, Copernicus, Ecotaxa. Data acquired can be exploited in the Virtual Research Environment, accessible via the EOSC federated login, while Blue-Cloud analytical services and interdisciplinary Virtual Labs are available through the EOSC Exchange.
What Blue-Cloud brings to EOSC
The Blue-Cloud Service platform features a variety of services that can be used for undertaking world-class science via the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) ecosystem, by featuring leading operational marine research infrastructures and e-infrastructures. Blue-Cloud supports the view of EOSC and expects EOSC to provide:
- A pilot thematic EOSC as a role model for the development of other thematic clouds. The cyber-platform of Blue-Cloud provides FAIR access to multidisciplinary data, analytical tools and computing and storage facilities that support research.
- Blue-Cloud Services showcased through five Demonstrators for ocean, seas and freshwater bodies for ecosystems research, conservation, forecasting and innovation in the Blue Economy, and making innovative use of seamless access to multidisciplinary data, algorithms, and computing resources - accelerating cross-discipline science.
- A methodology for researchers interacting with e-infrastructure developers to establish a cyber platform with tools and services, which support multiple scientific challenges and are fit-for-purpose, while built upon generic core principles and services.
- A mechanism to easily access and discover blue data. Blue-Cloud partners manage important volumes of blue data (e.g. SeaDataNet, EMODnet, CMEMS, etc.) and links have been established with major European observing networks to increase the data volume.
- APIs to access blue services that will complement EOSC base services providing blue thematic functionalities.
- Dynamic examples of how a framework like Blue-Cloud can address one or several of the policy challenges defined in the Bioeconomy Strategy, the Circular Economy Strategy, the Blue Growth Strategy, the Common Fisheries Policy, the Maritime Spatial Planning Directive, the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, the International Ocean Governance Communication and the UN SDGs.
- A global Blue Economy community close to the EOSC vision, including the marine and maritime industry.
- The opportunity of bringing EOSC in the Blue Economy long-term vision via the policy-oriented Blue-Cloud Roadmap to 2030 which seeks a series of EU Calls for further development and uptake of the Blue Cloud by multiple VRE applications and connecting additional marine data infrastructures.
The Blue-Cloud Open platform is a great example of implementation of the three main components of the EOSC Federation - EOSC-Core, EOSC-Exchange and the Federation of Data & Data Services - into a unique Open Science platform accessible and usable by other research communities. Blue-Cloud is a front runner of Data federation in practice, given its success in bringing together 9 data providers covering 10M datasets from the marine domain and making them available via the DD&AS and the VRE to users, allowing interdisciplinary interactions between disciplines, thus demonstrating the value of bringing together a variety of providers and users within EOSC.
Blue-Cloud services available in the EOSC Marketplace
As of November 2022, 15 Blue-Cloud services are available via the EOSC Marketplace. Check our services in the EOSC Marketplace.
Accessing Blue-Cloud via the EOSC login
The Blue-Cloud Virtual Research Environment (VRE) on D4Science is accessible via a wide range of identities, from academic accounts to social media, as well as all the ones accepted by the EOSC Portal, such as DARIAH, EGI, OpenAIRE, ORCID, eduTeams, IGTF, Instruct ERIC, B2Access and Google. This means that researchers and users do not need to create a new account from scratch when first accessing the Blue-Cloud VRE, but they can enter straight away with their own credentials and immediately exploit all the services and resources in the environment.
- Blue-Cloud Open Science platform as a model for a sustainable Data federation in EOSC: workshop at the EOSC Symposium 2022. November 2022
- Blue-Cloud's position paper on EOSC. March 2022
- Interfacing Blue-Cloud Data Discovery & Access Service with EOSC. March 2021