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Our Frequently Asked Questions

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  • iSHARE is designed to be data agnostic, which means it enables the sharing of any type of data, regardless of its format or structure. The iSHARE Trust Framework comprises a collection of specifications and agreements that facilitate secure and standardized data sharing among different organizations. These specifications and agreements encompass critical aspects such as identity and access management. The framework is not limited to any particular data type, allowing it to be flexible and adaptable in diverse scenarios. It serves as a versatile means for data sharing that can be customized and expanded to meet the unique needs and requirements of various organizations.

  • The iSHARE satellite serves as a trust anchor within a data space, playing a crucial role in ensuring trust and compliance. A trust anchor acts as a guaranteeing and sometimes certifying authority within the data space, responsible for evaluating whether parties adhere to the data space agreements. At the core of the Trust Framework, the satellite maintains registrations of data space participants. Any participant can use the satellite to verify the validity of another participant before connecting and exchanging data. 

    When a participant seeks admission to the data space, the satellite verifies their compliance with technical standards, their verified identity, and their signed contract. This onboarding process establishes a user-friendly approach to data sharing while upholding security measures. Certified parties, due to their role in the iSHARE network, undergo a more stringent evaluation process. The satellite employs an assessment framework to ensure that  certified parties meet the specific requirements associated with their role.

    To learn more about the satellite and its primary use cases within the iSHARE Trust Framework, continue reading  here.

  • Although initially developed for  the logistics sector, iSHARE’s principles and specifications are not limited to a specific industry, they can also be applied to diverse sectors and industries. iSHARE has already extended its reach beyond logistics and is actively involved in sectors such as energy, mobility, agrifood, environment, ports, and cities. The iSHARE Trust Framework is being used to establish a standardized approach for energy data among different organizations, resulting in energy cost savings, and reduced carbon footprint. In smart city initiatives, iSHARE is employed to securely and uniformly share data. 

    iSHARE believes that data sharing within a data space should not be limited to a single sector or domain. Such limitations would restrict the creation of new innovative services since individuals and organizations typically operate across multiple domains simultaneously. By design, iSHARE is purposefully developed as a generic, open, federated, and not-for-profit standard. This design ensures that iSHARE is cross-sector and cross-border, allowing for broader collaboration and innovation.

  • Trust is a crucial factor in data sharing, as it establishes the foundation for organizations to exchange data with confidence. It ensures that data is used appropriately and that parties can rely on its accuracy and reliability.

    When sharing data, it is vital to ensure that it is handled securely and confidentially, even after it has been handed over to other parties. This includes implementing adequate data protection measures, such as encryption and access controls to safeguard the privacy and security of the data. By doing so, the risk of unauthorized access, loss, or theft is minimized.

    Furthermore, trust plays a key role in fostering collaboration and innovation. When parties trust each other, they are more inclined to openly share data and collaborate on developing new insights and solutions.

  • No, iSHARE did not coin the term “data space.” The term has been used in various contexts to describe virtual or physical environments where data can be securely stored, shared and processed. While iSHARE did not invent the term,” it has played a role in advancing the development of a framework and standards for secure and trusted data sharing. Through the iSHARE Trust Framework, organizations can exchange data in a standardized and secure manner, providing the necessary components for creating effective and efficient dara space environments.

  • The iSHARE Trust Framework provides several building blocks for data sharing. This framework enables secure and standardized data sharing by incorporating agreements and technical specifications for identity and access management. These building blocks can be combined with other building blocks of data spaces to create a comprehensive and secure environment for data-sharing that aligns with an organization’s unique needs and requirements. 

  • iSHARE is a non-profit organization with a mission to establish and maintain  a standardized and secure approach to data sharing. Since its establishment, iSHARE has grown into a pan-European initiative.

    In simple terms, iSHARE maintains the iSHARE Trust Framework, which consists of agreements and technical specifications that facilitate secure data exchange between organizations. This Framework helps standardize practices among participants. Through the framework, iSHARE ensures that all data spaces become interoperable, forming a network of interconnected data spaces and participants. This interoperability significantly reduces the administrative burden associated with data sharing.

  • Building Blocks are essential elements necessary for designing a data space and promoting its sustainability and growth. Initially, there was a 9-block model developed by INNOPAY for the Ministry of Economic Affairs in the Netherlands. Later, this model was expanded into a 12-block model through the program. Below, you will find the modified 12-block model from the model.

    Figure – Building blocks in a Data Space

  • A Data Space provides a framework that helps in data sharing. It is designed to be decentralized and trustworthy, creating an ecosystem where data can be shared with confidence. Data Spaces are not only important for data sharing, but also for efficient data management, security risk mitigation, to foster innovation and allow for collaboration.

    As described in iSHARE’s “Cookbook for Data Spaces”, a data space essentially is “an environment where data is shared between trusted partners who adhere to the same standards and guidelines regarding the sharing and storage of this data within one or more ecosystems”.