Science is currently undergoing a revolution thanks to a new approach to the scientific process based on openness, inclusiveness and cooperation, known as Open Science. The EU’s Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Carlos Moedas, aims to keep Europe at the vanguard of this change by promoting open access to scientific data and publications. This type of open collaboration will help research and innovation to generate the knowledge and solutions needed to tackle long-term societal challenges such as health, climate change or energy.
The European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), a virtual one-stop shop for researchers to share, access and reuse data, was officially unveiled at the University of Vienna, Austria, on 23 November, giving scientists, open data advocates, research institutions and policymakers a first glimpse of the portal.
We may never be able to entirely predict earthquakes such as those that hit central Italy in 2016, but we could better assess how they’re going to play out by joining up data from different scientific fields in a new Europe-wide observatory, say scientists.
The idea of creating a shared online repository that would make all data from publicly funded research available for anyone to investigate and use, sounds like a laudable and ambitious plan. But how exactly would a European open science cloud (EOSC) work in practice? On 28 and 29 November, data experts, policymakers and scientists gathered in Brussels, Belgium, to discuss the way forward. Horizon went along and here are nine things we learned.
Changing the way science is done in Europe is the first job in setting up the European open science cloud, a huge shared data repository that will enable data from all publicly-funded research to be freely accessible, according to Dr Juan Bicarregui from the Science and Technology Facilities Council, UK.
We live in an era where open data can pave the way to a more sustainable, secure and safe food system, according to Dr Panagiotis Zervas, senior project manager at Agroknow, a company that finds, connects and delivers agricultural and food information worldwide.
Highly sophisticated computers are mining vast amounts of data from the web, digital maps and satellite imagery to pick out trends in areas like demographics, transport and the environment.
Europe’s big cities have been spreading their tentacles into surrounding villages and farmland for centuries. Now, satellite analysis is helping free up old parking lots, disused factories and abandoned roads to keep new developments inside the city limits.
People no longer take science advice on trust, and science advisers need to provide evidence for their recommendations, according to Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Science, Research and Innovation.
Problems have dogged its floodgates but other measures have been successful.
Sea ice researcher Dr Polona Itkin spoke to Horizon about life aboard a research vessel drifting in the Arctic.