An introduction to the Data Spaces Business Alliance Hubs
Last September 2021, BDVA, FIWARE, Gaia-X and IDSA launched the Data Spaces Business Alliance (DSBA) with a common objective to accelerate business transformation in the data economy. One of the joint working areas of the DSBA is supporting the existing organisations and data spaces by pooling their tools, resources, and expertise in a focused way.
In this context, the four European associations have developed – as part of its individual missions, strategies, and operations – international networks of national or regional ‘Hubs’: the BDVA i-Spaces, FIWARE iHubs, Gaia-X Hubs and the IDSA Hubs. Together a network of almost 90 Hubs (and growing) distributed over 34 countries becomes a key asset for the engagement of multiple stakeholders in the public and private sectors (in particular SMEs) and for the development and deployment of data spaces in Europe and beyond. The potential for impact is immense.
The concept of ‘hub’ is used and implemented differently by each of the associations, and it is not necessarily comparable but complementary. Additionally, within each of the individual networks we can find a lot of heterogeneity (e.g., in their legal form, operations, etc.) and levels of maturity. Despite this diversity, there is some common ground and more importantly a potential for synergies and impact creation by bringing hubs together to collaborate.
Throughout this document, we refer to the ‘DSBA hubs’ as the overall network or group of hubs combining the hubs of the 4 associations, that are briefly described here:
Gaia-X Hubs are the central, national contact points to inform about the Gaia-X Association. They are not a body or part of the Association, but rather act as independent think tanks, supporters or ambassadors and influencers for Gaia-X. The Association and the national Gaia-X Hubs cooperate in the areas of Gaia-X technologies, projects, and communication.
The Gaia-X Hubs shall support the Association in its endeavour to spread its deliverables. The Gaia-X Hub participants are encouraged to become a member of the Association and engage permanently in its Groups and in its data space activities.
IDSA Hubs incorporate all members, research organisations and companies that use IDS concepts and standards per country. The IDSA Hub is facilitated by a university, research organisation or non-profit entity. It enables communication between the Hub and the Association and drives forward the dissemination and adoption of the IDS standard.
The following map shows the current IDSA Hubs and Competence Centers:
FIWARE iHubs are innovation hubs focused on the building of communities and collaborative environments to enable digital businesses to thrive at regional and global levels. Providing – such as private companies, public administrations, academia, and developers, among others. with tailored business development support, connection to FIWARE’s global network, easy access to open-source technologies, marketing and community building training. FIWARE iHubs speed up innovation and digitalisation journeys.
The following map shows the current Fiware iHubs map:
BDVA i-Spaces are trusted data Incubators and experimentation ecosystems accelerating the take up of data driven innovation in public and private sectors. i-Spaces offer secure data experimentation environment allowing Research, Education, and Innovation stakeholder to experiment and innovate with data, acting as hubs to connect different stakeholders at local and regional level. To become a BDVA i-Space, organisations need to go through an evaluation/labelling process.
The following map shows the BDVA i-Spaces: