The Alliance will bring together businesses, Member States representatives and relevant experts. It should strengthen the position of EU industry on cloud and edge technologies. It aims to serve the needs of EU businesses and public administrations that process sensitive categories of data, and has the objective to increase Europe’s leadership position on industrial data.
Cloud and edge technologies are strategic innovation enablers for the uptake of emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and 5G. They provide the infrastructure for highly innovative use cases. Europe needs to strengthen its position of EU industry on cloud and edge technologies.
Cloud and edge technologies are key enablers for Europe’s digital transformation. The Alliance aims to bring together relevant stakeholders from the private and public sector to jointly define strategic investment roadmaps to enable the next generation of highly secure, distributed, interoperable and resource-efficient computing technologies. In addition, the Alliance will serve as a platform for exchange on issues of cloud governance, for example relating to the public procurement of cloud services.
What will be the role of the Alliance?
To achieve the above-mentioned objectives, the Alliance will work on the following non-exclusive list of tasks:
- bringing relevant actors together to prepare and update horizontal and technology specific investment roadmaps on cloud and edge;
- providing recommendations to ensure the coherent integration of investments with those foreseen for the deployment of common European data spaces in relevant areas ;
- advising the Commission on requirements and standards for cloud services, including for public procurement.
The work of the Alliance will be facilitated by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT). The operational work will be driven by an appointed Steering committee and relevant working groups. For further information, please refer to the Terms of Reference of the Alliance (.pdf).
Who can join and how
Any organisation with activities of significant relevance to the provision of highly secure cloud and data processing can join the Alliance at any time by signing up to the Alliance Declaration (.pdf), providing that the it meets the eligibility criteria as determined in the Terms of Reference (.pdf).
The Alliance will be exclusively open to participation by businesses that have a legal representative established in the European Union. Entities which are subject to control by a third country, acting either directly or by way of measures addressed to a third country entity, will have to submit additional proof of the legal, organisational and technical measures they have taken to ensure full compliance with the EU’s data protection framework.
Concretely, eligible organisations can express their interest in joining the Alliance by responding to the continuously open call.
The European Alliance for Industrial Data, Edge and Cloud builds on the European data strategy from 19 February 2020. Its creation was endorsed by the European Council conclusions from 1-2 October 2020 and the Declaration on European Cloud signed by all Member States on 15 October 2020.
The Alliance will contribute to shaping the next generation of secure, low-carbon and interoperable cloud and edge services and infrastructure for Europe as envisaged in the European Data Strategy. It will also contribute to the EU’s digital compass targets for 2030.
To support these ambitions, EU funding for cloud and edge will be made available in the context of programmes like the Digital Europe Programme, Connecting Europe Facility 2 , European Defence Fund, and the Recovery and Resilience Facility channeled through Member States.