Saturday, November 26, 2016

FAQ: What you need to know, but were afraid to ask, about the EU Open Science Cloud; Science Business, 11/24/16

Science Business Staff, Science Business; FAQ: What you need to know, but were afraid to ask, about the EU Open Science Cloud:
"Will the data in the EU science cloud be available for free?
Some of it, yes; some of it, no. The EU says that not all data ‘will necessarily be free’, due to the legitimate rights of IP holders, so there will be an opportunity for some organisations to sell access to some of their data through the cloud. Private publishers, such as Elsevier and Springer, are also keen to be able to maintain charges for access to some of their services – but have also been unexpectedly enthusiastic about exploring the possible new business models that a very large, very active cloud could permit. On the other hand, some universities and research councils – among the most active proponents of free open access for research reports and text and data mining – are pushing to make the new cloud a tariff-free zone. It’s difficult to predict yet how this issue will be resolved...
What about privacy or ethical concerns?
Differing privacy and ethical policies and regulations in Europe, the US, and elsewhere could become sticking points which would prevent the cloud becoming fully global. There are legal restraints on where research data can be stored – essentially it has to be located in countries, and under the control of organisations, that are subject to EU data protection legislation, and that should make US-based commercial providers a little wary. Rules will need to be established to clarify the roles and responsibilities of the funding agencies, the data custodians, the cloud service providers and the researchers who use cloud-based data. The Commission has said these legal issues will be resolved as part of its broader rule-making efforts under its Digital Single Market – for privacy, copyright, and security of data. But it may not be so simple. The last time science and data rules collided was in 2014/15, when the EU was rewriting its data-privacy regulation; the original, EU-wide proposal would have had an unintended impact on medical research – leading medical universities across the EU to scream loudly that the EU was about to kill drug research. A muddled compromise resulted. Expect similar surprises in cloud regulation."

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