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Coscine – The new integration platform for research data

May 10th, 2021 | by

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Coscine is a platform of the IT Center that supports researchers in working with their research data. Coscine stands for Collaborative Scientific Integration Environment. The pilot phase with the first users has started and will be used for user-oriented further development of the platform.

We are very pleased to be able to briefly introduce the platform to you. Have fun reading!

Background

Researchers already use a variety of services to organize, store, and share their research data. This can quickly become confusing when the number of research partners, services, and data increases.  This is where Coscine comes in.

As an integration platform, Coscine allows already established IT Center services such as the research data repository (FDS.NRW) and GitLab – and in the future also external services such as sciebo – to be linked and managed at the project level.

With Coscine as a central hub for project, research and metadata, it will be easier to keep track of everything.

(English version of the video will follow soon)

Open Source Solution from the IT Center

Coscine is developed and operated by the IT Center of RWTH Aachen University as an open source project. Thus, a community of users and developers shall be formed to continuously improve Coscine and to meet the diverse requirements of researchers.
Researchers benefit from established services and specialized data repositories that are now also made FAIR by Coscine.

With the open and integrative approach, the developers are focusing on “linking established solutions, avoiding media discontinuities, and supporting metadata management in parallel with the research process,” says Bela Brenger, who holds the role of service manager for Coscine in the FDM team. “It has become apparent that researchers handle their data in very different ways, and the diversity of methods means that there can be no monolithic “big solution” that fits all researchers and processes. That’s why we are taking an integrative approach with Coscine.”

The next steps

First, IT Center services that are in the FDM context will be linked to Coscine. Specifically, this concerns the use of the research data repository and metadata management. In addition, Gitlab will be connected and integration of external cloud services (e.g. sciebo) is also planned.

The platform is already running and a small number of selected users are intensively testing the system. This guarantees close support and a quick response to requirements. Coscine will be continuously developed based on feedback from researchers.

Try it out

The current pilot phase is public, which means that all interested parties can test the platform and use it for their research data. Users are encouraged to provide feedback to help shape further development, improve the platform and suggest services to be integrated in the future.
For the pilot phase, the developers point out that there may still be restrictions in the availability and use of the offered services.

Learn more

Do you have questions about Coscine? Just write to the ServiceDesk. The developers are looking forward to your message.
Also have a look at the documentation on IT Center Help.

 

Responsible for the content of this article: Bela Brenger and Jana Baur

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