The digital world takes up a significant part of our everyday life. We meet in video conferences, shop online or download the new album of our favourite musician directly to our smartphone. Even attending concerts is increasingly falling victim to the relaxed watching of the accompanying live stream on the couch at home - and not just since Corona. For all this to take place as smoothly as possible, a decentralised data infrastructure is required: the so-called cloud.
Up to now, the market for cloud computing has been dominated by a few large US companies. In times when data is often referred to as the currency of the future, the resulting dependency is certainly problematic, especially when it comes to the storage of personal information such as health data. After all, even large companies and public institutions today depend on powerful online storage.
Mit der vom deutschen Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie (BMWi) gestarteten Initiative Gaia-X soll eine Alternative geschaffen werden, die es den Bürgern der EU ermöglicht, auch sensible Daten geschützt durch die scharfen EU-Datenschutzstandards in einer Cloud zu speichern. Die Grundidee dabei ist, dass sich viele kleinere Anbieter innerhalb Europas gezielt vernetzen. Das BMWi hat für die Entwicklung dieses innovativen Netzwerks folgende sieben Leitprinzipien auf Basis der europäischen Werte festgelegt:
Although Gaia-X is not profit oriented, the economy will also benefit from a stable European cloud, as long as it becomes the standard for its services, software and data archiving. In this way, synergies can be used in the future to promote innovation, on the basis of which sustainable business models can be developed. This is particularly valuable for data-based technologies such as artificial intelligence.
OFFIS board member Prof. Dr. techn. Susanne Boll-Westermann is part of the Workstream 1: "User Ecosystems and Requirements" within the initiative. Its goal is to enable a broad and sustainable activation of the user and demand side so that important factors such as clearly regulated data sovereignty can lead to the highest possible level of trust. In this way, participation hurdles are lowered in a targeted manner and the coordination effort between the individual users within the online network can be reduced to the necessary minimum.
Workstream 1 brings in the different perspectives from the application domains and develops cross-application requirements. Together with Mr Stefan Hoppe (Senior Manager Strategic Technologies at Beckhoff Automation GmbH & Co. KG), Prof. Boll represented Workstream 1 at the Virtual Expert Forum with the online lecture "User's rationale: insights from various use cases", which presented the requirements for Gaia-X from the user's perspective. In the Gaia-X Health working group, Ms. Boll brings in requirements from the health sector, which have already been included in the document "GAIA-X: A Pitch Towards Europe Status Report on User Ecosystems and Requirements".
With the "Future Care Platform" use case, which deals with how Gaia-X can support care in the face of future challenges, Susanne Boll also defined the initial added value that a decentralized care platform would bring.
The Gaia-X initiative is so diverse in its possibilities that Minister Peter Altmaier did not call it the "launch of a digital moon rocket" without reason. Since OFFIS will be represented in the fields of energy and smart living in addition to the domain of health, we will continue to provide regular insights into the development of Gaia-X.
Use Case „Future Care Platform“: