Data Ecosystems

Data spaces enable companies to share and add value to their most valuable asset: Data. Data is one of the strategic resources of our time and data ecosystems are the operating systems of the future global data-driven economy, which is why the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft supports the goal of creating a sovereign digital infrastructure for citizens and companies in Germany and Europe together with politics and industry.

The International Data Spaces (IDS) initiative, jointly launched by the BMBF, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and industry, is creating an international standard for data sovereignty. This will create a decentrally organized data ecosystem that, in cooperation with GAIA-X, will ensure sovereign, cross-company data exchange.

The IDS reference architecture already provides a blueprint for future industry-specific and cross-industry data ecosystems. Numerous technical components for the data and service levels, software modules and connectors have emerged, as well as models for the secure and sovereign use of data and new business models.

In this content collection, you will find links to content, experts, articles, videos, white papers, and position papers that deal with data ecosystems.

Data Ecosystems Day 2020

"Data ecosystems are currently the greatest opportunity for innovation," explains Heinrich Pettenpohl of the Fraunhofer Institute for Software and Systems Engineering ISST. But given the dominance of American companies in this field, what might a European response look like? The International Data Spaces Association (IDSA) has developed an architecture that ensures sovereign handling of data. With Data Ecosystems Day on November 26, 2020, we took a closer look at the goals achieved by the IDS standard. Watch our trailer "On our way to a new European paradigm"

There, the developers of the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Internet Technologies, the Fraunhofer ICT Group and the International Data Spaces Association presented and explained their work:

  • die Komponenten, die die Teilnahme an vertrauenswürdigen und souveränen Datenökosystemen erlauben,
  • wie die ab sofort mögliche Zertifizierung der Teilnehmer an Datenökosystemen funktioniert,
  • IDS-basierte Datenökosysteme, die erfolgreich in Betrieb sind und
  • die Rolle von IDS in der europäischen Cloud-Infrastruktur GAIA-X.

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Auf der Eventplattform des digitalen Tags der Datenökosysteme finden Sie weitere Inhalte, darunter   

  • the components that allow for participation in trusted and sovereign data ecosystems,
  • how the certification of participants in data ecosystems works,
  • IDS-based data ecosystems that are successfully in operation, and
  • IDS's role in the GAIA-X European cloud infrastructure.

» Visit the event platform


Livestream recording of the Data Ecosystems Day

In 2015, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft presented the concept of a cross-company data space. It enables companies to share and add value to their most valuable asset: Data. This concept has been further developed by the International Data Spaces Association (IDSA), initiated by BMBF, Fraunhofer and industry, into an international de facto standard - the IDS Standard for Data Sovereignty. With it, IDSA has paved the way to a trustworthy and sovereign data economy. Now the IDS standard is ready for use.

Watch on Youtube




International Data Spaces Association

GAIA-X: Joint data infrastructure for Europe


Die International Data Spaces werden Unternehmensalltag

in German language only


Viel wertvoller als Öl und Gold

in German language only


Data Spaces Research Center



»Ökosysteme für Daten und Künstliche Intelligenz«

In German language only



Whitepaper "Industrial Data Space

Digital souvereignty over data


Fraunhofer initiative: International Data Spaces



Data Ecosystems: Foundations, Constituents and Recommendations for Action


Video series

Vlog of Fraunhofer ISST on data ecosystems

For English translation, please switch on subtitles


Blog article

Digital Twins for Agriculture

Fraunhofer IOSB

Industrial Internet of Things

Fraunhofer AISEC

Industrial Security

Fraunhofer IESE

Smart Ecosystems – Digital ecosystems for a shared future


Fraunhofer CCIT

Data Spaces Research Center


Fraunhofer CCIT

Technology overview