Feasibility study of implementation of X-Road for research data is now published
Deliverable D3.6 is dedicated to the feasibility assessment of X-Road-based solutions for exchanging research data. The goal of the feasibility study was to understand how X-Road can improve the situation with the exchange and processing of research data in existing organisations.
X-Road is open-source software and ecosystem solution that provides unified and secure data exchange between organisations. X-Road is built with security as one of the main goals. This technology includes many features that allow assuring that messages are queried and delivered by and to exactly the authorized parties. X-Road is therefore often used for connecting data registers that contain sensitive data with processors of the data. X-Road is developed by the Nordic Institute for Interoperability Solutions (NIIS), a nonprofit association established by the governments of Estonia and Finland. X-Road refers to the technology and actual deployments use their own names with their own rules of participation.
Dozens of countries have already implemented X-Road as their national data exchange layer solution. While X-Road is widely used for communication among organisations in the same country, the study focused on its actual use in a cross-border scenario. For that reason, three organisations across three countries (the University of Tartu in Estonia; CSC in Finland, and Riga Technical University in Latvia) were chosen to validate X-Road for scientific use cases. A feasibility assessment was conducted in collaboration with a research group at the University of Tartu, that develops an X-Road-based software project GenMed to process genomic data. Software deployment resulted in a situation where an analytical engine in one country was able to request the genomic data from the registry in another country in a safe and efficient way. Thus, adopting X-Road for real-time applications working with sensitive data has a good potential in R&D. Future work will compare the service delivery model in X-Road with that of EOSC.