The ISGTW feature "Working towards a European open science cloud" covered European open science cloud event held on the 25th of June at the CERN premises in Geneva. The meeting was focused on bringing public research organisations together commercial cloud-computing providers in an effort to design and build a common platform that would offer specialised services to Europe’s research communities, and was run jointly by the Helix Nebula Initiative and the PICSE (Procurement Innovation for Cloud Services in Europe) project. Particularly as part of the later one, Trust-It Services is involved in the development a procurement model that could enable research centers to collectively acquire cloud-computing services to support their research.
Getting the procurement right
Sara Garavelli of Trust-IT Services spoke at the event about the progress made by the PICSE project since its launch last October. Based on a community survey and a range of in-depth case studies, the project team has found that the procurement policies of many public research organizations do not currently foresee provisioning of cloud-computing services on demand, and sometimes these organizations lack the fundamental skills to run cloud procurements.
To improve this situation, the web-based ‘PICSE Wizard’ tool will be launched next month. The tool will support IT managers and procurement officers at public research organizations in procuring cloud services through public tenders. Garavelli highlights the importance of building standard procurement procedures that are well suited to addressing the specific challenges of cloud computing: “The PICSE Wizard will help procurers to overcome several of the challenges highlighted at the recent EU28 Cloud Security Conference in Riga, Latvia."
"There is a need for clear procurement guidelines built on cooperation between the public and private sectors,” explains Garavelli. “This is what PICSE is working to achieve with the support of the Helix Nebula Initiative.”