Under construction: National research data infrastructure

Data is the raw material of the future – and also of academia. Each research project increases the amount of data that can potentially be accessed. But how can these be systematically developed, sustainably secured, and made accessible and (inter)nationally networked? With a National Research Data Infrastructure (NFDI).

Illustration mit einer offenen Hand und Menschen die durch Striche miteinander verbunden sind; © Adobe Stock/vegefox.com

Adobe Stock/vegefox.com

In November 2018, the Federal Government and the  Federal States decided to set up an NFDI and are providing up to 90 million euros per year until 2028.

Aims of the NFDI:

  • Systematically and sustainably improve access to research data
  • Decentralized, project-based, temporarily stored data pools can be accessed
  • Create an overall structure of interconnected consortia
  • Bring providers and users together
  • Develop standards for interoperable research data management
  • Create a common basis for data protection, as well as the sovereignty, integrity and quality of data
  • Build services
  • Ensure international connectivity

Up to 30 consortia, i.e., associations of universities, non-university research institutions or other publicly funded information infrastructure facilities, are to receive the majority of the funding. Existing data collections and services will be merged and new, comprehensive services and solutions for research data management will be established in Germany.

The first of three tender rounds is already under way: In June 2019, the German Research Foundation (DFG) published a call for proposals to fund NFDI consortia.