May 15, 2022

Research Data: Turning FAIR Into Reality (Final Report/Action Plan From the Commission FAIR Data Expert Group)

From the European Commission:

The report “Turning FAIR Into Reality” describes the broad range of changes required for the implementation of the FAIR data principles. It offers a survey and analysis of what is needed to implement FAIR and it provides a set of concrete recommendations and actions for stakeholders in Europe and beyond. By following a holistic approach, the FAIR Data EG provides a template for key changes in the practice and culture of research and the implementation and normalisation of certain technologies and practices.

From the Executive Summary of the Report:

2018-11-24_15-50-41The central sections of this Report focus on existing practice in certain fields to ascertain what can be learned from those research areas that have already developed standards, international agreements and infrastructure to enable FAIR. These examples have helped to define models for FAIR Digital Objects and the essential components of a FAIR ecosystem. Naturally the main building blocks in the ecosystem are technology-based services. However, the social aspects that drive the system and enable culture change – namely skills, metrics, incentives and sustainable investment – are also addressed.

The report makes a number of detailed recommendations and specifies actions for different stakeholder groups to enable the changes required. Implementing FAIR is a significant undertaking and requires changes in terms of research culture and infrastructure provision. These changes are important in the context of the European Open Science Cloud and the direction for European Commission and Member State policy, but go beyond that: FAIR requires global agreements to ensure the broadest interoperability and reusability of data – beyond disciplinary and geographic boundaries.

Twenty-seven recommendations are made, which are grouped into ‘Priority’ and ‘Supporting’ Recommendations. The fifteen priority recommendations should be considered the initial set of changes or steps to take in order to implement FAIR. The Supporting Recommendations may be considered as following on from the Priority Recommendations, adding specifics or further detail for implementation. Each individual Recommendation is followed by a set of Actions. Each Recommendation and each Action is numbered for unambiguous referencing. The full set of Recommendations and Actions are presented in the FAIR Action Plan at the end of this report.

Direct to Full Text Report:  Turning Fair Into Reality (Report of the Commission FAIR Data Expert Group)
78 pages; PDF. 

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.