Spain drives coordination and open strategic autonomy in cloud, data and artificial intelligence in the EU

Nov 13, 2023 | Current affairs, Featured, Revista Lloseta, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union has agreed with the European data space community to expand and improve coordination in the development of European cloud, data and artificial intelligence initiatives.

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Coordination and open strategic autonomy in cloud, data and artificial intelligence in the EU

Under the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union, the Government of Spain led the Gaia-X Summit 2023 in Alicante, an event that brought together leaders of the European data space community and culminated in the promotion of open strategic autonomy in the cloud, data and artificial intelligence.

The document, the result of collaboration between the European association Gaia-X AISBL, the Spanish Gaia-X hub and the Data Office (under the Secretary of State for Digitalization and Artificial Intelligence), and framed within the Spanish Presidency, is a joint call for a “more coherent and coordinated” response in the development of European programs and projects related to the cloud, data and artificial intelligence.

The communiqué notes that the interconnection of cloud, data and artificial intelligence will be a key pillar for future competitiveness and highlights the importance of data for efficiency in the industrial value chain. It also advocates interoperability, supported by a robust infrastructure of cloud services and calls for the development of high-quality data-driven Artificial Intelligence with strong governance that complies with European regulatory frameworks.

The call fits into the various European initiatives and programs already underway, from IPCEI-CIS to the European SIMPL project. However, it underlines the need for broader and more effective coordination to drive industrial projects, advance the standardization of cloud tags and trusted data, and ensure high levels of cybersecurity, data protection and algorithmic transparency.

With the Gaia-X initiative, the aim is to generate a model for deploying data spaces and achieving efficient data exchange. In this regard, the communiqué stresses that data sharing provides two relevant benefits, such as increasing the overall availability of data and its usefulness in producing joint data of higher quality.

Single Data Market and Europe’s Global Leadership in Data and AI
The objective is to achieve a “flexible, dynamic and highly scalable” data economy that facilitates access to more and better data from heterogeneous but complementary domains, improving the quality of products and services within the value chain.

With the goal of achieving a Single Data Market, the text points out that data exchange processes must follow a common governance framework. Thus, it appreciates that the novel set of digital and data legislation, such as the Data Act or the Data Governance Act, is becoming a global reference, but notes that there is still a need for its practical articulation to generate traceability and trust and enhance coordination on data.

“Europe has the capacity to become a world leader in a data-driven future, based on reliable data processing, with key industry data spaces as an input for Artificial Intelligence that will serve international competitiveness and productivity gains,” the statement highlights. “All while complying with the European values and rights that define us, including fostering efforts for strategic autonomy,” it adds.

Gaia-X Summit 2023
The Gaia-X Summit 2023 served as a space for the exchange of ideas and the presentation of key projects. During the event, the implementation of a Strategic Plan was announced by Ulrich Ahle, CEO of the European Gaia-X Association for Data and Cloud AISBL, focused on ensuring end-user adoption and driving collaboration with cloud and data service providers.

The intensity of the discussions during the event and the results achieved, captured in the document, underline the relevance and commitment of the European data space community.

Signed by the Secretary of State for Digitalization and Artificial Intelligence, Carme Artigas, and the Chief Data Officer of Spain and President of the Gai-X Government Council, Alberto Palomo, it is supported by representative leaders of the European data ecosystem, such as Gaia-X AISBL, the Spanish hub of Gaia, the International Association of Data Spaces, the EU Data Spaces Support Center, the Big Data Value Association (BDVA), the Spanish Platform for the Adoption and Dissemination of ICT (Planetic), the Cervera Network or the Federation of Technology Centers of Spain (FEDIT) or AMETIC.

The communiqué is open for new members to join, marking a milestone in shaping Europe’s digital future. In the face of the move towards a Data Economy, the joint call drives the creation of a trusted, transparent and secure ecosystem that promotes collaboration and effective data sharing across Europe.