Initiative: European data platform for the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic

31. 3. 2020.

The Ministry of Science and Education of the Republic of Croatia invites scientists, scientific groups and institutions from the scientific system to establish a European data platform for the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. (Platform Notes, Description of Platform Components)

To support the European Commission's initiative to establish a European COVID-19 data platform, the Ministry of Science and Education, in cooperation with the Croatian Science Foundation and a representative of the Republic of Croatia in the EOSC Governing Council (EOSC), is launching information gathering on all relevant research activities and resources that may be made available when investigating the COVID-19 pandemic and the SARS-CoV-2 virus. A form has been created to enter information on activities and resources that scientists and infrastructure providers can fill out.

In cooperation with the European Commission, with the support of the EOSC Steering Committee (EOSC GB), the establishment of the European COVID-19 data platform was initiated, with the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) in charge of its implementation. At the EOSC GB meeting, held on 25 March 2020, representatives of Member States, including the Republic of Croatia, supported the initiative and assumed the task of collecting and delivering data from their countries.

The European COVID-19 data platforms will focus on the collection and sharing of clinical and epidemiological data sets and results in real time to accelerate research into finding a cure for the SARS-CoV-2 virus and to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to data, Member States are invited to make their e-infrastructure resources available, with an emphasis on advanced computing resources. Although the platform is focused on biomedical research, we believe that no other research activities exploring the social, economic and educational aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis should be neglected at this time.

By establishing a global data platform, the Croatian science sector can contribute to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences. This platform will also be a great help to both global and Croatian research teams, which will be able to view all relevant research activities and resources in one place and will be able to network their activities. We therefore invite all Heads of Institutions from the systems of science and Heads of research teams to help meet this objective by completing a preliminary questionnaire and establishing a national record of relevant research and resources.

As early as 23 March 2020, the University Computing Center invited researchers and scientists participating in the COVID-19 pandemic research effort to let us know if they need significant computing power and storage for modeling, simulation or data processing purposes. For their needs, SRCE is offering the Isabella cluster and HTC Cloud.