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Group plans ‘industrial data space’ for global users

26 February, 2015

A group of German organisations, backed by their Government, have announced plans to create a data space that will be available to industries around the world. Access to, and use of, this “Industrial Data Space” will be safeguarded by a set of standards. The aim is to develop a secure, decentralised system that can cope with increasing digitalisation and the rapid shifts in industrial manufacturing and business processes that come with it.

“The lifeblood of any company is its data. Ensuring reliable and secure access to information is essential for the future of industry and society,” explains Professor Reimund Neugebauer, president of the Fraunhofer Institute, which is one of the driving forces behind the project. “We envisage a connected data space that will provide a more efficient way of creating value in all sectors.”

The German Minister of Education and Research, Professor Johanna Wanka, says that the project aims to develop tools that will enable as many companies as possible to participate in the digital industrial revolution. “German and European industry must retain control over its own data,” she adds. “At the same time, SMEs need a protected space in which they can share and exchange data according to rules that they themselves establish.”

A key aim of the Industrial Data Space is to open up the opportunities offered by Industry 4.0 to as many companies as possible. “Our goal is to seize the opportunities of this fourth industrial revolution,” says Matthias Machnig from the German Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. “Creating a consortium of industry and research to address issues – including reference architecture, standardisation and data security – is an important step toward that goal. It shows that industry, research and politics are all working together.”

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