November 15, 2004
GridCoord is a Special Support Action (SSA) of the Sixth Framework Program of the European Community. The goal is the coordination of European initiatives and research activities in Grid computing in order to strengthen cooperation among the funding agencies planning future activities, to enhance collaboration between the research and user communities, and to develop visionary national and EU programs and roadmaps enabling Europe to play a leadership role in Grid technologies and applications.
There are several Grid research initiatives, ongoing or planned, at the national and European Community level, aiming at the development of a rich set of advanced technologies, methodologies and applications. If the challenges that lie ahead are to be solved, enhanced coordination among the authorities funding these initiatives is needed in order to achieve critical mass, avoid duplication and reduce fragmentation of efforts.
From 2002 to 2006, EU funding for Grid research and deployment more than doubled, reaching 275 million euros in FP6. For the same period, an estimate of the funding for Grid research and deployment by a number of Member and Accession States (United Kingdom, France, Italy, The Netherlands, Germany, Hungary, Spain, Poland, Czech Republic, Sweden) is about 300-500 million euros.
The totality of these initiatives could provide the EU with the potential to play a leading world role in Grid technologies and applications. National and EU collaborations have been established with other international players (in the US and Asian-Pacific area) and with international standards organizations. However, if Europe wishes to compete with leading global players, it would be sensible to attempt to better coordinate its various, fragmented efforts in order to achieve critical mass and the potential for a more visible impact at an international level. This requires:
The first objective of GridCoord is thus to strengthen co-operation among the funding authorities in order to better co-ordinate the planning of future activities in the field of Grid research, an ERA Strategic objective. A second objective is to enhance already existing collaborations between researchers and users. Finally, it is our intention to contribute toward the development of visionary national and EU programs and roadmaps, enabling Europe to play a leadership role in Grid technologies and applications.
The project brings together national research program leaders and representatives from national funding authorities with the aim of ensuring national commitment to future joint activities. The following institutions are partners of GridCoord:
To achieve the first objective -- improved coordination among funding bodies, policy makers and leaders of Grid initiatives -- the project will:
To achieve the second objective -- enhanced collaboration among researchers and users of Grid technology -- the project will:
To achieve the third objective -- development of Grid R&D programs and road maps -- the project will:
The multinational character of Grid research in Europe should be maintained and developed according to the intrinsic strengths of the different national programs. This implies the continued development of both individual national and EU programs for future Grid research initiatives at the same time as supporting multilateral exchange of experiences and plans to create a more complementary and coordinated approach toward Grid Research in Europe.
GridCoord is coordinated by the Dipartimento di Informatica, University of Pisa, Italy: coordinator, Marco Vanneschi; project manager, Roman Tirler.
Dept. of Computer Science, Pisa University
Italy Tel: +39 050 2212738 E
This article was originally published in ERCIM News, the official publication of the European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics (October 2004 issue).
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