Interoperability Platform

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The goal of the Interoperability Platform is to help people and machines to discover, access, integrate and analyse biological data. It encourages the life science community to adopt standardised file formats, metadata, vocabularies and identifiers and works internationally to achieve its goals.

What the Platform does

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  • Identifies and promotes interoperability best practices for data providers and data integrators.
  • Delivers the interoperability services that underpin ELIXIR Communities and Platforms.

To achieve these goals, the Platform's work is split into four tasks spanning 2019-23:

Task 1: FAIR Service Architecture

Goal: To maximise the value and benefit by integrating data from disparate resources across disciplines and borders by developing the FAIR service infrastructure that incorporates tools that are fit-for-purpose.

This task will deliver

  1. Roadmaps, Interoperability Resource Maturity Model, and Gap analysis to facilitate the 'Interoperability for Interoperability' framework
  2. A portfolio of the ELIXIR Recommended Interoperability Resources (RIRs) and key Interoperability services
  3. The 'Interoperability for Interoperability' demonstration through Bioschemas and the Common Workflow Language (CWL)

Task leaders: Carole Goble (ELIXIR-UK), Helen Parkinson (EMBL-EBI), Sirarat Sarntivijai (ELIXIR-Hub), Alasdair Gray (ELIXIR-UK), Michael Crusoe (ELIXIR-NL)




Task 2: Interoperability with a Purpose

Goal: To deliver demonstrable and improved level of usage support for FAIR data by key interoperability resources and services at the National Nodes, and Use Case Communities while promoting global collaboration of FAIR implementation network.

This task will deliver

  1. Landscape analysis and a portfolio of user's requirements of RIRs and key EIP services for Communities
  2. FAIRmetrics and FAIR CMMI maturity model based on practical experiences
  3. Guidelines on cross-node data management plan and protocol
  4. Recognition and prepresentation of ELIXIR international strategic collaboration for Interoperability Services

Task leaders: Chris Evelo (ELIXIR-NL), Frederik Coppens (ELIXIR-BE), Inge Jonassen (ELIXIR-NO), Eric Pelletier (ELIXIR-FR), Susanna-Assunta Sansone (ELIXIR-UK)


  • Node-based Interoperability working groups focusing on the First Mile/Last Mile user framework
  • Strategic Implementation Study for Node Interoperability Data Management Plan (DMP at Nodes)
  • Strategic collaborations with flagship international organisations (e.g., the Research Data Alliance - RDA, NIH BD2K Data Commons, and GA4GH)

Task 3: Capacity Building

Goal: To improve content and EIP service registry organisation for public and internal communications on the EIP knowledgehub, and transition to EIP enhanced online Knowledge Portal, and provide a sustainable knowledge sharing mechanism through training and outreach.

This task will deliver

  1. A comprehensive knowledge portal via the EIP web interface
  2. Training workshops of EIP services and practices via both virtual interaction and in-persons outreach
  3. Periodic review of FAIR implementation best practices

Task leaders: Sirarat Sarntivijai (ELIXIR-Hub), Erik Hjerde (ELIXIR-NO), Ivan Micetic (IT),


  • Outreach and training at Nodes and Communities based on specific use case requirements
  • Presentations of EIP services in practice at conferences and meetings

Task 4: Interoperability Services for the Cloud

Goal: Establish the need for cloud deployed instances of individual RIRs through consultation with ELIXIR Communities and through established Use Cases; perform cost benefit analysis for each such RIR and evaluate the landscape and extent of the current cloud-enabled interoperability resources.

This task will deliver

  1. Implementation and deployment of cloud-enabled EIP Interoperability RIRs and services to support EOSC projects
  2. Cloud deployment best practice document

Task leaders: Helen Parkinson (EMBL-EBI), Frederik Coppens (ELIXIR-BE)


  • Identify ELIXIR RIR Registries that are suitable for Cloud  EOSC EDMI compliant deployment
  • Support inter-catalogue metadata exchange and EOSC e-Infrastructure services

Related links

  • Bioschemas: extension tailored for life science concepts.
  • a resolving system to reference data in both a location-independent and resource-dependent manner.
  • Ontology Lookup Service (OLS):  a repository for biomedical ontologies that aims to provide a single point of access to the latest ontology versions.
  •  curated, informative and educational resource on data and metadata standards, inter-related to databases and data policies.
  • CWL for Tool Interoperability: Common Workflow Language to aid interoperable software development.




Commissioned Services

The Interoperability Platform is involved in a number of short-term, technical projects called Commissioned Services. These are currently:

For completed studies see the Commissioned Services page.


Carole Goble
Carole Goble
Chris Evelo
Chris Evelo
(ELIXIR Netherlands)
Helen Parkinson
Helen Parkinson
Sirarat Sarntivijai
Sirarat Sarntivijai
(Platform Coordinator, ELIXIR Hub)

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