The data economy is a powerful driver of innovation and new business models. Portability, interoperability, sovereignty and transparency are all issues that need to be addressed. Various projects such as Gaia-X and the International Data Space (IDS) have set themselves the task of establishing a uniform standard for data sharing (IDS) and infrastructure (Gaia-X) in the form of architectural models and anchoring the issue of data sovereignty to meet this need. The Data Spaces concept defines the interaction of various technological components to promote data exchange across (corporate) boundaries while maintaining data sovereignty.

One of the most important components is the so-called connector, which connects the individual participants of such a data space and forms the end point for the actual exchange of data according to existing standards.

Eclipse Dataspace Connector

The concept of Data Spaces promises new possibilities for data exchange between participants in terms of data sovereignty. In order to build and participate in a Data Space, it is not enough to consider existing data transfer protocols. A common standard is needed for the “control plane,” i.e., discovery, connectivity, automatic contract negotiation, policy enforcement, and auditing. Dataspace connectors act as logical gatekeepers that sit in each participant’s infrastructure and communicate with each other.

The Eclipse Dataspace Connector (EDC) provides a connector framework for sovereign, cross-organizational data exchange. The framework includes modules for data retrieval, data exchange, policy enforcement, monitoring and auditing. In particular, it integrates with existing identity, data catalog and transfer technologies to provide cross-enterprise compliance, policy and control capabilities.

The EDC will implement the IDS and relevant protocols associated with the GAIA-X project. However, it will be extensible so that it can support alternative protocols.

DIO is a partner of the Eclipse Foundation

The Eclipse Foundation provides a technical environment for the future growth of the Eclipse Dataspace Connector. As a European foundation, it aligns with the EDC’s value proposition as well as the related Gaia-X and IDS initiatives.

Its role as a trusted partner will thus facilitate the development of an extensible, open-source ecosystem for sharing sovereign data. The EDC thus has the potential to drive additional projects around IDS and Gaia-X in the future.

DIO is also a member of the EF to take an active role in supporting sustainable, commercially viable open-source technologies that benefit everyone.

You can read more about the EDC and how the Connector works here.