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iSHARE Foundation and the International Data Spaces Association signed a MoU

iSHARE Foundation and the International Data Spaces Association Strengthen Collaboration, bringing together the IDSA data space framework and the iSHARE Trust Framework

Den Haag, NL/Dortmund, DE – 14 March, 2024. In a significant step towards strengthening a trusted data-sharing ecosystem where the data rights holder is in control, the International Data Spaces Association (IDSA) and iSHARE Foundation (iSHARE) formalised their commitment by signing a Memorandum of Understanding at the Data Sharing Festival.

Joint Leadership Commitment

Respective CEOs Gerard van der Hoeven (iSHARE) and Lars Nagel (IDSA) affirmed their dedication to collaboration by signing the MoU, reflecting a mutual commitment to complement each other’s roles in advancing data spaces activities and sovereign data sharing. 

Complementary Role Descriptions and Collaboration Structure

The agreement defines clear roles for both organisations, emphasising IDSA’s focus on the technical foundation for data spaces (IDSA Rulebook, IDS Reference Architecture Model, Dataspace Protocol, IDS Certification) and iSHARE’s dedication to the Trust Framework, Trust Protocol, and Governance Components.

Specifically, the iSHARE Trust Framework assures that data owners (Data Rights Holders) gain distributed and trusted control of their data through the iSHARE Autorisation Registry role, and trust assurance and interoperability through the iSHARE Satellite being Participant Registry and issuer of trust credentials for certification levels and legal coverage.

IDSA’s architectural framework makes sure that data spaces operate seamlessly. The Dataspace Protocol is integral to the technical implementation of each data space component, guaranteeing interoperability among participants. The IDSA Rulebook serves as a guide for achieving organizational interoperability within data spaces, and IDS Certification plays a central role in realizing trust in the data economy.

The strategic alignment between iSHARE and IDSA ensures compatibility and extends functionality, providing a foundation for operations, governance, and testing components in data spaces. It represents a significant leap forward for the data spaces community. 

Continued Building of a Framework of Trust and Next Steps

Referencing the 2022 joint efforts, this collaboration solidifies a framework of trust for data spaces, combining IDSA’s rulebook and reference architecture with iSHARE’s Trust Framework and Trust Protocol to ensure autonomy within trust principles, legal certainty, and technical control for participants. 

IDSA’s and iSHARE’s continuous collaborative efforts have already resulted in co-founding the Eclipse Dataspace Working Group in 2023. The aim is to accelerate the development of an expanding open-source ecosystem for data spaces. The focal point of this endeavor is to deliver universally accepted standards and enterprise-ready software components, propelling the establishment of data spaces for sovereign data sharing.

With this collaboration; the users of both frameworks can expect the following results over the coming months:

  • Clear communication in the respective working groups in IDSA, iSHARE and Eclipse Dataspaces Working Group.
  • Joint definition of the components and protocols for data spaces (including the Dataspace Protocol and trust protocol).
  • Alignment of the iSHARE service provider role specifications and IDSCertification scheme, thereby Combining certification for both iSHARE and IDSA certification/compliance.
  • Addition of the Authorisation Registry role that empowers data owners into the IDSA Reference Architecture.
  • Referencing the groundwork of both organizations in the respective documents to have a clear conceptual alignment.
  • Active collaboration on key projects, such as Basic Data Infrastructure (BDI), i4Trust, Catena-X, Manufacturing-X, Factory-X and many others.
  • Joint marketing initiatives, including showcase of iSHARE data spaces in the Data Spaces Radar.
  • Mutual representation in the bodies of the respective organisation.

This MoU marks a significant milestone in the partnership between iSHARE and IDSA, paving the way for enhanced cooperation and innovation in the evolving landscape of data sharing. In this regard, both CEOs comment:

Lars Nagel
International Data Spaces Association
“As we reinforce our collaboration, aligning the IDSA dataspace framework with the iSHARE Trust Framework, we’re fostering global standards for sovereign data sharing. This alignment ensures interoperability and a solid foundation for operations and governance in data spaces. It’s a giant leap forward, offering a reliable cornerstone and an important accelerator for the entire data spaces community to innovate upon.”

Gerard van der Hoeven
iSHARE Foundation
“The iSHARE Foundation has consistently aimed to empower data rights owners with unified and trusted control over their data across ecosystems. By ensuring a clear separation of concerns, data rights holders can rely on third-party validated credentials for legal coverage and assurance with every data exchange. These detailed specifications not only foster trust interoperability but also enhance assurance through an expanding network.

This collaboration, alongside deeper integration with IDSA’s pioneering work on Data Spaces, addresses the pressing need for practical and interoperable solutions in numerous data spaces. Through this close partnership, we are advancing the data spaces ecosystem, enabling data rights holders to maintain full control over their data. This aligns perfectly with the objectives outlined in the European Data Governance Act, ensuring that data sharing remains secure, transparent, and compliant.” 

For further information, please contact:

iSHARE Foundation
Montserrat Calderon

About International Data Spaces Association (IDSA):

The International Data Spaces Association (IDSA) is on a mission to create the future of the global digital economy. Its 150+ member companies and institutions have created a framework for sovereign and trusted data sharing within data spaces that allows all participants to realize the full value of their data. The IDSA Rulebook describes the organizational level of data sharing. The IDS Reference Architecture Model (RAM) expands upon this description at the technical and semantic levels. Within the RAM framework, the Dataspace Protocol establishes a cornerstone for technical interoperability, extracting required features at the business process level from agreed-upon industry standards. IDS enables new smart services and innovative business processes to work across companies and industries while ensuring that the control of data remains in the hands of data providers. We call this data sovereignty.
More information: 

About iSHARE Foundation:

The non-profit iSHARE Foundation governs and promotes the iSHARE Trust Framework, a standard for governing trust and data sovereignty within data spaces. Operational since 2018, and used by organizations committed to excellence and adhering to industry standards, the iSHARE Foundation maintains a reliable framework for data spaces globally, facilitating secure and streamlined data sharing for all participants. For more information visit: 

The iSHARE Trust Framework is governed by Data Spaces that adopt it, ensuring continuous development and alignment. Interoperability and trust are assured among participants and between data spaces at legal, operational and technical levels.