Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The ENGAGE project: An EU eInfrastructures Initiative on Open Data


An Infrastructure for Open, Linked Governmental Data Provision towards Research Communities and Citizens

A project under the European Commission eInfrastructure programme, to begin in Summer 2011.

Information and Communication Technologies have an unprecedented potential to improve the responsiveness of governments to the needs of citizens and have long been recognized as a key strategic tool to enable reforms in the public sector. During the last years, this potential of ICT has started to be dealt with in a multi-disciplinary way, giving birth to new research communities dealing with governance and policy modelling, modelling and simulation of complex systems, public administration information systems, open governance and social media. However, this potential is to this day non-systematically exploited, as there are significant barriers that hinder the effective exploration, management and distribution of the vast amounts of available public sector data towards the research communities. 

The main goal of ENGAGE project is the deployment and use of an advanced service infrastructure, incorporating distributed and diverse public sector information resources as well as data curation, semantic annotation and visualisation tools, capable of supporting scientific collaboration and governance-related research from multi-disciplinary scientific communities, while also empowering the deployment of open governmental data towards citizens. 

The ENGAGE consortium comprises of 9 partners from Belgium, Germany, Greece, Israel, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, with an excellent track record both in the eInfrastructures and the Governance domain (NTUA, FOKUS, STFC, Uni. Aegean, TU DELFT) including world-leaders in cloud infrastructures (IBM, Microsoft and INTRASOFT International) and a large network of scientific data diffusion (EUROCris). 

Following on Open Data initiatives throughout Europe, ENGAGE has established links with numerous National and International public sector organisations, research communities, open data experts and standardisation fora. The project is supported by the Greek NREN and NGI node GRNET, providing the infrastructure for service provision.

 

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