The PETRAS Data Sharing Foundation: Building a Trustworthy Data Sharing Ecology for IoT Data Assets (PETRAS-DSF)

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The aim of the PETRAS Data Sharing Foundation (PETRAS-DSF) is to create a data foundation for the PETRAS programme that supports the sharing of PETRAS data assets.

The data foundations framework provides a means to create trustworthy data sharing institutions that feature a combination of data governance processes and partially-automated procedures to support data sharing activities. Data foundations endeavour to address challenges that hamper efforts to share data across organisations and devices, especially in situations involving the exploitation of sensitive data (e.g., data that might be used for nefarious purposes).

A data foundation acts as a trusted third-party intermediary between a collection of data providers and data consumers. It works to ensure that data sharing activities are undertaken in a safe and secure manner by vetting data access requests and limiting data exchange activities to those that are deemed compatible with a communally-agreed set of data sharing policies, whilst respecting societal values endorsed by the community.

The PETRAS-DSF will identify and characterise the IoT data assets that are being used, acquired, or  generated as part of the PETRAS programme. It will then establish a data-sharing agreement between PETRAS members that specifies the constraints on data sharing processes; and will implement a data-sharing platform that supports the discovery and utilisation of PETRAS data assets by approved actors.

The PETRAS-DSF project will provide the basis for collaborative research activities that cross-cut the individual projects of the PETRAS programme. In addition, the project will provide an important opportunity to test the procedures associated with the implementation of a data foundation. It will also advance our understanding of some of the issues that influence the extent to which data foundations are perceived as trustworthy institutions, as well as the various forces and factors that can limit user participation and engagement with a data foundation. These insights will be invaluable in supporting the creation of data foundations beyond the bounds of the PETRAS programme.