The Italian Open Science community has not been idle recently, and a lot of things have been happening in the last few months. The most relevant is maybe the fact that ICDI, the Italian Computing and Data Infrastructure, that brings together key actors in the national scenario of Research Infrastructures and e-Infrastructures, was included among the four founding members of the EOSC Association. At the moment, ICDI, which was appointed by the Italian Ministry of Research as the mandated organisation in the EOSC Association, is a collaborative framework, established through an MoU signed by CINECA, CNR, Elettra Sincrotrone, ENEA, GARR, INAF, INFN, INGV and OGS, with AREA Science Park in the process of joining the signatories. As such, it has no legal status but it is represented by GARR, but steps are being taken to bring this arrangement to the next level and incorporate it as an association.
In this capacity, on 29 July GARR signed on behalf of ICDI the founding act of the EOSC Association, together with CSIC (the Spanish mandated organisation), and European CESAER and GÉANT. After the signature, the real work to set up the organisation begun and ICDI representatives are currently contributing to defining the Association’s bylaws and strategy. Notably, Federico Ruggieri, GARR director and the ICDI spokesperson in this building phase of the EOSC Association, was appointed as one of the provisional board members until the first assembly, which is supposed to take place in December, will elect the association’s Board of Directors and President. As the Project coordinator, Ruggieri has no need for presentations to the EOSC-Pillar community and his involvement will ensure that input from the project can flow in this process.
"We are working to build a strong ICDI for a stronger European Open Science Cloud"
Meanwhile, other activities at the national have started or are gaining momentum. Alongside the six Shadow Working Groups, which bring together national experts that support the work of Italian delegates in the EOSC Working Groups, ICDI has recently launched several task forces dedicated to topics of interest to the Italian community. The Italian partners in EOSC-Pillar are involved in these activities and often play leading roles there.
The Italian Federated Cloud Platform Task Force (FCP-IT) aims at developing a strategy and identifying adequate technical solutions to build a federated cloud dedicated to research on a national scale, and to propose itself as a model also at the European level.
The Italian Competence Center for EOSC Task Force (CC-IT) aims to create a national Competence Center that can act as a reference for the Italian community and a platform to federate, coordinate and further disseminate the existing competences within Research bodies, Infrastructures and Universities that are part of the Italian Open Science community. Notably, the TF chair, Emma Lazzeri, is well known in the EOSC-Pillar community as she leads training activities and is the project’s delegate in the EOSC Skills & Training WG.
The Clinical Data Management Task Force intends to build a support platform for the management of clinical data within the institutions where they are first created. Initially, the work will focus on data related to COVID-19, with the twofold objective of facilitating data sharing on this urgent line of research and contributing to the European COVID-19 Data Portal, and of creating a Proof of Concept that can be used for sharing biomedical data relating to other pathologies.
ICDI also carries out surveys and studies on OS topics and participates in consultations with the EOSC governance and the Italian institutions. Some recent examples include the open consultation on the National Plan for Research, recently launched by the Italian Ministry of Research and including the National Open Science plan, and the SRIA consultation. On the latter, besides filling in the questionnaire, ICDI has recently made public a position paper.
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