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The European Grid Infrastructure (EGI) Technical Forum in Amsterdam this week is the first major public meeting to bring together the European e-Infrastructure community and partners of the EGI-InSPIRE project. Developers, end-users, resource providers and decision makers from around the world will meet to drive forward a sustainable grid infrastructure for Europe.
The EGI-InSPIRE (EGI-Integrated Sustainable Pan-European Infrastructure for Research in Europe) project, launched 1 May 2010, is a collaboration between National Grid Initiatives and European International Research Organisations (the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)). Its goal is to support the development of a sustainable, pan-European e-Infrastructure available to all European scientists and their international collaborators.
“The establishment of EGI marks a new phase in the provision of a Europe-wide e-Infrastructure to support the capacity for transnational, large-scale, data analysis demanded by researchers in Europe,” says Steven Newhouse, EGI-InSPIRE project director.
The project is co-funded by a 25 million euro investment from the European Commission as part of a 73 million euro overall project cost. The EGI-InSPIRE partners fund additional national activities that complement the European investment, that are projected to contribute a total of 300 million euro over the next four years. Together, these investments will develop a European grid computing service dedicated to advancing European research in all fields of science, from climate modelling to high-energy physics and ecology.
”I am really happy about the commitment for EGI and EGI-InSPIRE from all the member countries and organisations,” says Per Öster, chair of the EGI council. “It demonstrates their strong belief in the mission to give an opportunity for all European researchers to access e-Infrastructure resources that meet their specific needs,” he adds.
EGI-InSPIRE's mission is aligned with the European Commission's goal to remove barriers to the free movement of knowledge across Europe. This ambition, outlined in the Lisbon Treaty, is now hailed as the fifth freedom to be enjoyed by the European Union's member states, after the free movement of goods, capital, services and people.The EGI Technical Forum is the first event to gather all participants in EGI-InSPIRE. The forum is hosted by the Dutch National Grid Initiative, BiG Grid, at Amsterdam's Beurs van Berlage and is sponsored by IBM and Aruba Networks.
"The Beurs van Berlage, with its original purpose as a trade exchange, is a perfect location for the EGI Technical Forum, where the exchange of expertise and ideas is vital to further the e-infrastructure for science,” says Arjen van Rijn, chairman of BiG Grid's executive team.
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