EOSC DIH: a one-stop-shop for digitising companies

Elisa Cauhé on the benefits of the EOSC DIH initiative and current pilots

Digitalization, Big Data, the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0) are only some of the trending topics everybody is supposed to know and many companies are using in their pitches in tech environments to go with the flow.

But the truth is that, according to the Integration of Digital Technology report published by the European Commission in 2019, the adoption of the digital technologies shows numbers to bring us back down to Earth: 26.2% of enterprises invest in cloud computing services, with only 17.8% investing in cloud computing services with medium-high sophistication, whereas the average adoption of Big Data analytics in the European space is around 12% (33% in large companies). The adoption of digital technologies is uneven between countries and sectors, with some of the traditional manufacturing subsectors (i.e. furniture, textile, metals) in the tail of digitalization.

In 2016, the European Commission launched an initiative to create Digital Innovation Hubs, a new concept of partnerships based on competence centres to help companies in their process of digitization and adoption of the latest technologies (e.g. cloud computing, 3D printing, robotics, artificial intelligence) to improve their performance. The objective? To boost the European economy by providing advanced knowledge to the SMEs.

With the main goal of centralizing and exploiting different industrial experiences of the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) ecosystem, the EOSC Digital Innovation Hub (EOSC DIH) was launched with the initial support of the EOSC-hub project in January 2018. We could define the EOSC DIH as a one-stop-shop to help companies in digitisation by easily accessing both digital technologies and human expertise offered through the EOSC.

The EGI Federation is playing a key role in both coordinating the overall EOSC DIH as well as offering technical and human services thanks to the established EGI community. Overall, the EOSC DIH supports companies to test applications or running experiments (e.g. proofs of concepts), leverage the wealth of knowledge within the public sector for specialized consultancy services and training on the adoption of digital skills, as well as join an international community for wider visibility and networking opportunities. These are just some of the services that the EOSC DIH shares with the companies involved and is growing as new partnerships are established.

At the moment, the DIH has launched 10 business pilots covering different sectors and technologies:

BBC: Transforming video content through compression and large-scale processing

BBC R&D supports the delivery of high-quality content to all BBC audiences, which consume more and more video, demanding increasingly higher quality and leading to a need for video compression standards. This pilot tests the use of the EGI Federated Cloud as a large-scale processing infrastructure, which has the capabilities to transform how content providers obtain, produce and deliver content in challenging scenarios.

CyberHAB: using data cloud services to manage harmful algae blooms

CyberHAB uses EGI Notebooks as an interface and processes analysis with the EGI Cloud Compute service. The platform can be used to extract information from monitoring data, converting hundreds of variables and parameters into visualizations to support decision-making.

VAMOS: analysing sports performance through a cloud-hosted platform

The EGI infrastructure helps Moxoff to increase its computational capacity and to reach an active network working on mathematical modelling, data science and optimization.

DS-DRACO: a cloud framework for state-of-the-art Space Weather data

The DS-DRACO pilot was developed by Hidronav to build a cloud infrastructure that can manage the distribution of this Space Weather data. The pilot allowed DS-DRACO to access the EGI cloud computing resources needed to meet their processing and storing requirements.

KDS: Prediction of developing the Gaucher disease.

The spin-off Kampal Data Solutions developed an analytical model based on AI to identify correlations between rare diseases. Using the EGI infrastructure, the challenge is to predict if a person has the probability of developing the Gaucher disease which considerably increases the data required the complexity of the model and the computing requirements.

NetService: blockchain for university certificates

Are public institutions able to issue valid official documents in a digital form on the blockchain? The pilot demonstrates a blockchain solution deployed on the EGI federated infrastructure with cloud service support, that can be obtained via an authentication service from a Certification Authority of the EUTSL list, or the EGI AAI Check-in service.

Elisa Cauhé is Strategy and Innovation Officer at the EGI Foundation.

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