Project deliverable Open Access

FAIRplus: D5.5. Sustainability Plan

Scollen, Serena; Lynch, Nick; Williams-Jones, Bryn; Hurst, Hannah; Peeters, Paul; Sansone, Susanna; Rocca-Serra, Philippe; Delfin, Alejandra; Cambon-Thomsen, Anne; Emam, Ibrahim; Juty, Nick; Pippow, Andreas; Beyan, Oya

FAIR data management in itself needs a long term strategy and sustainability plan to be viable. Funders, researchers and organisations all need to incorporate changes to the amount of time and resource spent on managing data to maximise the potential of the data. FAIRplus has committed to open access, open data and open source where applicable to support sustainability. 

The FAIRplus project outputs all need different approaches for sustainability. The drive to sustain outputs from this project is largely motivated by the need for continuing improvement and development in this area as well as the need to engage as a  scientific community (both as consumers but equally as contributors). This plan for sustainability outlines the options and reasoning for the approaches taken for the FAIRplus project outputs, which present a varied selection of the deliverables. Emphasis has been on the FAIR Cookbook (WP2/3), the Capability Maturity Model (CMM) (WP2/3), the FAIR Fellowship Programme (WP4) and framework on ethics, data and legal implications of data (WP6) as these were viewed by the consortium as the highest priority. This emphasis on outputs with the maximum value for the wider community and potential reuse, has simplified the options for sustainability and allowed focus on routes to uptake with external groups and potential partners. Consideration has been given to how the FAIRplus outputs can be sustained across the academic, biopharmaceutical and SME sectors. There are growing numbers of organisations providing ‘FAIR services’ either as commercial offerings (SMEs, but larger consulting organisations too) or as part of other FAIR & Research Data Management initiatives. Our long term aim is to allow the FAIRplus outputs to be part of those efforts, and thereby ensure that the users support further enrichment and uptake as they engage in their own FAIR data management.

At this moment, the FAIRplus project has had funding from the IMI and matched in-kind funding from EFPIA partners totalling 8.3M Euros. There is currently no knowledge of funding or future funding (IMI or other EC funded project proposal or a future call for proposals/topics) that would align or be a full extension of FAIRplus or that has a focus on making industry data FAIR. It is therefore deemed unlikely that funding at the scale of this project will be available to continue the activities. Despite this, activities within FAIRplus are contributing to advocacy efforts to make the case for additional funds e.g. general communication/outreach tasks and a FAIRplus webinar ‘what is the value of FAIR data’ policy event that will be held in December 2020. Using real life examples and use cases, this online event will showcase the value of FAIR data in pharmaceutical research and make the case for policy changes in relation to research data management and research funding. It is aimed at policy makers, data producers and data managers in industry and academia. Additional direct meetings with decision-makers in funding organisations will be organised, providing an opportunity to discuss topics outlined in the FAIRplus Policy Maker Engagement Strategy (D4.4). FAIRplus has also actively interacted and collaborated with the wider FAIR landscape of projects and initiatives in order to aid alignment, avoid duplication and consider how to move this active community forward.

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