What is Big Data All About?

Benefits of Big Data (Source: biginsights.co)

he term “Big Data” is relative and highly dependent. For example, the organizations that lack the ability to handle, store and analyze their own sets of data, are in fact experiencing the Big Data “phenomenon”. Nevertheless, this is not what Big Data is all about. Besides of being by order of magnitudes in terms of Volume, data has to be of greater Variety and complexity, and generated at a high Velocity, which are usually referred to as the three Vs of Big Data.

The three Vs of Big Data (source: http://blog.softwareinsider.org/2012/02/27/mondays-musings-beyond-the-three-vs-of-big-data-viscosity-and-virality/)

A better definition of Big Data might be: the processing, interpretation and representation of large volumes of data (typically, petabytes or zettabytes) originating from different sources in a way that makes the data meaningful and usable.… Click to read the full post

The Saffron-OMICS workshop as a source of agri-food research data requirements


Saffronomics-Fa1101bSaffron-OMICSOmics Technologies for Crop Improvement, Traceability, Determination of Authenticity, Adulteration and Origin in Saffron is a COST Action  (FA1101) on Food & Agriculture (FA) that aims to:

  • Strengthen the network of collaborative research on the structural organization of Saffron genome, DNA fingerprinting, chemical fingerprinting, proteomics, transcriptomics, and metabolomics of this crop and
  • define a common strategy to the final goal of preserving Crocus biodiversity, to carry out genetic improvement and to protect quality, sustainability, and safety of production of saffron in Europe.

Between May 14-15 2015, Saffron-OMICS organized a workshop titled “Advances in molecular and phytochemical fingerprinting for traceability and authenticity of saffron”, hosted by the Center for Research and Technology Hellas (CERTH) in Thessaloniki, Greece.… Click to read the full post

Openness and e-infrastructures for the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)


On May 13th 2015, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the Unit of the European Commission responsible for e-infrastructures, organised a workshop on the way European e-infrastructures may support the activities of EFSA. The meeting followed up a series of initial discussions and brainstorming between EFSA and various EC Units on how data-related activities and open policies may be aligned so that synergies may be found. It also came at an important turning point for EFSA that is working on becoming an open science organisation: the Open EFSA initiative has already made available a position paper for public consultation; it has organised a workshop with its key stakeholders; and it has a preliminary implementation plan in place.… Click to read the full post

Big Data Europe Workshop in Vienna

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Big Data Europe project logoThe members of the 7 societal challenges of the Big Data Europe Project gathered in Vienna on April 1st, 2015 to communicate their next steps in terms of requirements elicitation and workshops’ planning. Agro-Know in a joint partnership with the Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is responsible for the societal challenge of “Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research, and the Bioeconomy” and went to Vienna to present the requirements elicitation methodology and also discuss with other consortium members the next steps of this promising project.

A good meeting starts from the night before!

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Short report on the CLORA thematic day on Open Access to Research Data


CLORA network logoOn March 24th 2015, in Brussels, the CLORA network organized a thematic day on “Open Access to research data” and as you no doubt have guessed, Agro-Know was there, together with more than 40 participants from different French institutions and universities.

Representing the Big Data Europe H2020 project together with our colleague Phil Archer, we had our very own 45 minutes of the audience’s absolute attention, with the presentation “Big Data Europe: Understanding the requirements of the agri-food community“.


Phil presented in a clear way what the Big Data Europe project in general is all about, and then Effie took the stand in order to explain and help the audience understand which are the difficulties that research project managers and knowledge managers encounter when working in EU-funded projects in terms of Open Access and research outcomes, specifically in the agri-food community.… Click to read the full post

Agro-Know at the CLORA Thematic Day on “Open Access to Research Data“

CLORA network logo

CLORA network logoCLORA (Club des Organismes de Recherche Associés) is a network of French research organizations, such as public research centres and universities. It has been set up to facilitate the actions of the French public research stakeholders towards the EU institutions, in the fields of research, technology, innovation and training. The network aims at enabling a better understanding of the EU programmes and policies in which its members have an interest. In this context, the CLORA website can be used as a portal to a whole range of relevant information sources in the areas of research, technology, innovation and training.

On the 24th of March 2015, the CLORA network organizes a thematic day on “Open Access to research data“.… Click to read the full post

A teaser from the RDA 5th Plenary Meeting

Giorgos with RDA participants

The 5th Plenary Meeting of the Research Data Alliance (RDA) is taking place at San Diego, CA, USA between 9-11 of March 2015. Following the tradition, Agro-Know is represented for once more at this great event by our colleague Giorgos Papoutsis, our  Data Ingestion Associate who is participating as a representative of the Big Data Europe Η2020 Project and he will focus his contributions to the Agricultural Data Interoperability Interest Group meeting, where he will present the case of the agINFRA project as a mean for connecting agricultural data through an open and participatory data infrastructure. It should be noted that Giorgos is also actively involved in the data ingestion processes of AGRIS.… Click to read the full post

Big Data (all over) Europe: an opportunity ahead for food & agriculture

BDE launch event

Is this the time for big data technologies to be streamlined in Europe? Are we going to see a wave of big data powered tools and applications in different application domains and industry sectors? This is the ambitious goal of the recently launched initiative Big Data Europe and its is a major opportunity (but also challenge) for the agri-food sector as well.



The European Commission decided to bring together some of the best European minds researching and developing big data technologies, and ask them to work with representatives of the six key Societal Challenges that Europe is facing (and the European Commission is channeling its funding towards) so that we explore the capabilities and limitations of existing technologies.… Click to read the full post

Press Release: “Big Data Europe” to empower communities with data technologies

Big Data Europe project logo

New European project develops a platform to facilitate big data usage

Big Data Europe project logoThe growing digitization and networking process within our society has a large influence on all aspects of everyday life. Large amounts of data are being produced permanently, and when they are analyzed and interlinked they have the potential to create new knowledge and intelligent solutions for both the economy and society as a whole. To facilitate the use of Big Data technologies, the European Union funds an interdisciplinary research and innovation project called “BigDataEurope”. A European consortium, led by the Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information Systems IAIS, is developing a platform that will simplify the creation and access to Big Data applications and their integration into existing workflows.Click to read the full post