EDISON Project

EDISON Kick off meeting team photo

The Horizon 2020 EDISON project (1 September 2015 – 31 August 2017) aims to establish the data scientist as a profession. This will be achieved by aligning industry needs with available career paths, and supporting academies in reviewing their curricula with respect to expected profiles, required expertise and professional certification. This will result in a significant increase in the number and quality of data scientists graduating from universities and being trained by other professional education and training institutions in Europe.

All of this will be accomplished through the development of a number of inter-connected activities including a dialogue between professional sectors and academia for the definition of required skills and competences, a widely recognized definition of a Data Science Competence Framework (CF-DS) and related profiles together with a corresponding Data Science Body of Knowledge (DS-BoK) and related Model Curriculum (MC-DS).

To these ends the project will work in close co-operation with industry experts and research practitioners involved and interested in the development of data scientist profession, now a mainstream feature of the European scientific landscape.

In order to maximise the impact of the EDISON project as a two-year Coordination and Support Action we are assembling the outputs and achievements of the project into a framework that can be used by practitioners from all areas of the Data Science, both during and following the lifetime of the project. This EDISON Data Science Framework (EDSF) comprises a range of crucial documents that formally capture key elements of the DS profession, various ongoing processes that can ensure that the relevance of the information is maintained and finally there will be a collection of guidelines and discussion documents that enable optimal use to be made of the Framework.


The establishment of the Data Scientist as a new profession is a long process, starting from the solid theoretical background all the way to the practical process of certifying the acquired skills.

As CSA project, EDISON ultimately aims to accelerate such a process by coordinating the vision and activities of the stakeholders and supporting them in seizing the benefits of such efforts.

EDISON is aimed at consolidating the basis for the long term process of Data Scientist as Profession and ensuring a significant increase of the number of academically trained and professionally endorsed Data Scientists in the next decade. The following are the more specific and measurable project objectives:

Objective 1: Promote the creation of Data Scientists curricula by an increasing number of universities and professional training organisations. Increasing the number of universities offering Data Science programs is essential in order to respond to the increased demand of the European research, industry and public sectors. In order to support Universities in providing Data Science education the project will develop and implement a model curriculum in cooperation with the major stakeholders in the data driven science and industry. 

Objective 2: Provide conditions and environment for re-skilling and certifying Data Scientists expertise to graduates, practitioners and researchers throughout their careers.  To provide conditions for a sustainable increase in the number of Data Scientists in Europe, EDISON will also support the training by professional organisations of the self-made expert, in the light of reaching the target number of graduates that gradually will satisfy the level of research and industry demand in coming 5-8 years. 

Objective 3: Develop a sustainable business model and a roadmap to achieve a high degree of competitiveness for European education and training on Data Science technologies, provide a basis for the formal recognition of the Data Scientist as a new profession, including supporting the future establishment of formal certification for practicing “self-made” Data Scientists. 

Work Packages

The EDISON project will be delivered through the execution of five coordinated work packages.

Work package 1 – Coordination and Management

This work packages is responsible for all tasks and activities to ensure a smooth execution of the project.


Work package 2 – Educational Focus and Data Science Body Knowledge

This work package will collect and analyse information to define the required competences and skills for the Data Scientists working in different research fields and industry domains, and based on this we define required knowledge domains to be included into education and training programs; this will be defined as a Competences Framework for Data Science (CF-DS).


Work package 3 – Development and Reference Implementation Strategy

This work package will connect the theoretical results achieved in WP 2 into concrete actions and use cases for the target communities selected and nurtured by EDISON. The work package will develop the EDISON Educational and Training Model and its central component the Model Curriculum for Data Science (MC-DS) to be adopted in support of the three piloting use cases.


Work package 4 – Sustainability and Certification of Data Scientist Profession

WP4 develops and implements a strategy to ensure the exploitation of the EDISON Educational and Training Model through the definition of the service portfolio based on the outputs of WP2 and WP3, the business models and strategy that should ensure the sustainable of the EDISON developments.


Work package 5 – Dissemination and Engagement

The purpose of this work package is to manage the communication activities and outward interactions necessary for the successful delivery of the EDISON project’s overall objectives including the post-project impact objectives.


More detailed information about the structure, aims and activities of the project will be available shortly.


The EDISON consortium has been formed as a compact nucleus of seven complimentary partners from across Europe.

The partners represent universities (Amsterdam, Stavanger and Southampton), research institutions (FTK), research infrastructures (The European Grid Infrastructure), large enterprises (Engineering - Ingegneria Informatica s.p.a.) and SMEs (Inmark). The consortium represents six countries from across Europe (NL, NO, UK, DE, IT, ES).

Engineering - Ingegneria Informatica s.p.a – IT

Engineering was founded in 1980, and it is currently the first IT group in Italy, among the top 10 IT groups in Europe, with over 7.000 employees and 40 branch offices in Italy, Belgium, Latin America and USA.

Since 1987, Engineering innovation capability is supported by its Central Unit of Research & Development, with around 250 researchers currently involved in over 50 research projects co-funded by national and international authorities. The R&D Unit is located across 6 different locations in Italy and in Europe, with a shared investment of 30 millions of euro for the year 2013.



Andrea Manieri has a degree in Computer Science and is a Business Developer and Trainer at Engineering.

Isabel Matranga (Cloud Computing Lab) has a degree in Political Sciences from the University of Palermo and works within the R&D unit on ‘Infrastructures for distributed computing’ mainly taking care of the dissemination of project results, the identification of exploitation and sustainability strategies and the management of EU funded projects.

Nadia Nardi (Cloud Computing Lab) earned a Bachelor of Commerce in Information Technology Management from Ryerson University (2004) in Toronto, Canada. Having been with Engineering sice 2006, she recently joined the Research and Development Unit as a Project Manager.

Grazia Cazzin (SpagoBI Lab) is the SpagoBI Labs Director in the Research and Innovation Division of Engineering Ingegneria Informatica.

Ferdinando LoRe (Engineering Academy) is manager of the Corporate Training team in the Engineering Academy.

European Grid Initiative (EGI.eu) – NL

The Stichting European Grid Initiative (also referred to as “EGI.eu”) is a not-for-profit foundation established under Dutch law to coordinate and manage the European Grid Infrastructure (EGI) federation on behalf of its members: National Grid Initiatives (NGIs) and European International Research Organisations (EIROs).

EGI.eu offers a variety of services to the wider EGI community such overseeing infrastructure operations, coordinating user community support, working with technology providers, representing EGI in collaborative projects, steering strategy and policy development, organising flagship events and publicizing the community’s news and achievements.



Dr. Tiziana Ferrari is Technical Director of EGI.eu, and the project director of the EGI-InSPIRE FP7 project.

Yannick Legré is the director of EGI.eu since February 2014.

Sergio Andreozzi is leading the EGI Strategy and Policy Development activities, including the business engagement programme, sustainability and solution portfolio management.

Sy Holinger is member of the Strategy and Policy team at EGI.eu, with a focus on service cost modelling, business development and federated service management.

Owen Appleton is an internal consultant for EGI.eu on policy and sustainability, and is managing director of Emergence Tech Limited, a UK management consultancy.

Peter Solagna is the European Grid Infrastructure Senior Operations Manager

Dr. Sara Coelho works in the EGI.eu communications team implementing and leading on many aspects of the the communications strategy for the organisation and the EGI-InSPIRE project. 

Inmark Estudios y Estrategias S.A - ES

INMARK is a business and marketing consulting firm based in Madrid, with a large experience accrued in participating in 48 EU funded RTD and Innovation Projects.

INMARK has a track record of 35 years in business in Europe and Latin America. INMARK has branches in 7 countries, totalling some 200 qualified staff members.

Since 1992 INMARK has been involved as Coordinator and/or responsible for Dissemination and Exploitation in projects co-financed by the EC, mainly in the area of ICT and International Cooperation.



Ruben Riestra, director and shareholder of INMARK, is an Engineer and MBA with 34 years’ experience in marketing and business consultancy.

Sabina Guaylupo is senior consultant at INMARK and possesses a Law degree and a Master in International Law.

Maria Eugenia Beltrán is an Information Systems Engineer and senior consultant at INMARK, she holds an MBA in International Management 

Research Institute for Telecommunication and Cooperation (FTK) – DE

Since its foundation as an interdisciplinary research organisation closely related to University of Hagen (FernUniversität in Hagen, FUH) in 1991, the work of FTK - Research Institute for Telecommunication and Cooperation (FTK e.V. Forschungsinstitut für Telekommunikation und Kooperation, FTK) concentrates on the area of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).

An interdisciplinary team with well- founded research background paired with an expanded network to all important stakeholders in the field of ICT makes FTK a leading institution for the development and implementation of innovation strategies for business and administration in the ICT area. The institute is organized as a non-profit membership organisation and is statutory pursuing objectives in the public interest.



Matthias Hemmje is affiliated as full professor for Computer Science with the Distance University in Hagen, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, where he holds the Chair of Multimedia and Internet Applications.

Dominic Heutelbeck (Ph.D. in Computer Science), the General Manager of FTK, received his Dr. rer. nat. in Computer Science at the FernUniversität in Hagen.

Holger Brocks is a computer scientists who graduated from the Universität Trier.

University of Amsterdam – NL

The System and Network Engineering (SNE) Research group at the University of Amsterdam researches cross-domain interaction to enable complex and data intensive scientific applications.

The research themes within the System and Network Engineering (SNE) Research group cover a wide range of disciplines ranging from optical and programmable networks for the Future Internet to high level distributed system model and software engineering. The group is building tools and proof of concept applications that promote optimal use of these high-speed networks for data intensive application.

SNE works also in close collaboration with the Amsterdam Data Science which is a platform for collaboration cross discipline around the data science theme. In collaboration with SURFnet and the Dutch National super computer centre (SURFsara), UvA has capabilities to access high-speed optical test bed installations in the optical photonic backbone of SURFnet in the Netherlands and internationally in the Global Lambda Integrated Facility (GLIF). UvA is a founding member and key contributor to CineGrid, GLIF and OGF14.



Dr. Yuri Demchenko (Principal Investigator): Yuri Demchenko is a Senior Researcher at the System and Network Engineering.

Dr. Adam S.Z. Belloum (course coordinator and developer) is assistant professor in the System and Network Engineering research group at the Institute of Informatics.

Dr. Ana Varbansecu (course coordinator and developer): is assistant professor in the System and Network Engineering research group at the Institute of Informatics.

Manuela Corsini project manager for EU funded projects

Prof. Cees T.M. de Laat  chairs the System and Network Engineering (SNE) research group, and is a leading figure in the systems and infrastructure research in the Netherlands and internationally.

Dr. Wouter Los is a former chair of the Science Committee of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, and designed and managed the development of the (ESFRI) LifeWatch infrastructure for biodiversity and ecosystem research, and also a member of the EC High Level Group that edited the report “Riding the Wave”.

University of Stavanger - NO

CIPSI is a research Centre for IP-based Service Innovation. Hosted at the University of Stavanger, CIPSI core competences are in the fields of Big Data, Machine Learning, and Cloud Computing.

The CIPSI center is enrolled in several research and education projects in the above areas, including i.a. development, hosting, and deployment of Cloud Data Hub for Smart Cities (Horizon 2020), optimization methods for environment sensor data (EU FP 7), data analytics methods for Smart Houses (Norwegian Research Council). These activities provide good understanding of various data science requirements.

CIPSI is also involved in IEEE Special Technical Committee on Cloud Computing, IEEE CloudCom conference series, which together with related activities provide unparalleled opportunities for dissemination of project results.



Tomasz Wiktorski is an Associate Professor at CIPSI, University of Stavanger, Norway. He is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at Computer and Information Technology, Purdue University, USA.

Professor Erdal Cayirci is the Head, CAX Support Branch in NATO's Joint Warfare Center in Stavanger, Norway, and also a professor in the CIPSI center at UiS. 

University of Southampton – UK

The Faculty of Natural and Environmental Science (FNES) is one of the largest and most successful natural and environmental science faculties in the UK, educating a range of professionals and generating research of the highest quality.

Within this the Frey Group operates a “living lab” approach to scientific research and embraces a range of e-science practices and projects.

In parallel computationally based research, the group investigates how e-Science infrastructure can support scientific research with an emphasis on the way appropriate use of laboratory infrastructure can support the intelligent access to scientific data. Previously, within the UK e-Science programme, the CombeChem project (http://www.combechem.org) looked at the ways in which e-Science and Web infrastructure can be developed to provide support for and carry out chemical research.



Jeremy Frey is Professor of Physical Chemistry and Head of the Computational Systems Chemistry Group and the Frey Group.

Steve Brewer is Network Coordinator of IT as a Utility (ITaaU), one of the 4 sub-themes of the Research Council UK’s interdisciplinary Digital Economy programme.

Frequently Asked Questions

UvA in spring

What is the EDISON project?

What will EDISON deliver?

Who are the EDISON partners?

How can I get involved?

What is a data scientist?

What sort of people make it as data scientists?

When will EDISON deliver its outputs?

Why do we need EDISON if there is such a demand for data scientists?

Where will EDISON make an impact?

What do you mean by building the data scientist profession?

What other services will EDISON provide to assist with the process of furthering the Data Science profession?


What is the EDISON project?

  • EDISON is a 2-year EU-funded project that has been set up, starting from September 2015, to pursue the establishment of the data scientist as a new profession in support of e-Infrastructure needs and beyond. Demand for data scientists exists beyond the research infrastructure domain in all areas from research to commerce as well as policy-making and other matters of governance. Understanding the needs of the broader market will guide us in helping define the learning needs for data scientists as well as the additional soft-skills that will equip them for long and fruitful careers.

What will EDISON deliver?

  • EDISON has been structured to deliver a collection of specific products that will have a positive and marked influence on the establishment of the data science profession and provide a basis for coordinated work between the demand and supply sides. The core of this collection is three packages that will have captured the key elements of the platform that connects the suppliers of trained data scientists with the organisations that have need of such professionals. These publically available documents will formally define the data scientist profession through a Data Science Competence Framework (CF-DS) that will provide a methodological basis for designing the Data Science curriculum for universities and professional training institutions based on a Data Science Body of Knowledge (DS-BoK) and a Data Science Model Curriculum (MC-DS).

Who are the EDISON partners?

  • The core EDISON consortium comprises seven partners from different countries across Europe. Namely: University of Amsterdam, University of Stavanger, University of Southampton, Research Institute for Telecommunication and Cooperation (FTK), European Grid Initiative (EGI.eu), Engineering (Ingegneria Informatica s.p.a.) and Inmark Estudios y Estrategias. These organisations are represented by a team of highly motivated individuals experienced in many aspects of the big data landscape covering academia, industry and research infrastructure. However, others with interests in this area are welcome to get involved.

How can I get involved?

  • We are very keen to gather input, feedback and ultimately take-up and endorsement from those across Europe and beyond, with interests in the establishment of the data scientist profession. As the project unfolds we will announce a range of mechanisms whereby interested parties can get involved. These will range from workshops and talks, to questionnaires and surveys, to champions and liaison groups. See our website for further details: http://edison-project.eu

What is a data scientist?

  • There is no clear definition so far of what a data scientist is, but there is a lively debate on the topic and more importantly a lively market of recruiters offering to pay good salaries for what they perceive is a key role for the future. The consensus appears to be that a data scientist role is something between a data analyst, a statistician and a computer scientist but having sufficient domain specific knowledge and possessing of other pioneering scientific research qualities too. Another perspective on this complex role is sometimes referred to as a “T” shaped skill set. By this, it is implied that individuals possess a breadth of skills such as academic curiosity, story telling, product sense, engineering etc. but also deep statistical and machine learning competences for example. Furthermore, we believe that tomorrow’s Chief Executive Officers will be pooled from these data scientists of today. Such individuals will possess the insight, experience and wisdom to lead the major enterprises of tomorrow in an increasingly data-centric world.

What sort of people make it as data scientists?

  • This is a good question. The answer is something that the EDISON project is determined to find out. The courses that are delivering data scientists today are probably too heterogeneous to provide a clear answer, and the employers that are recruiting data scientists are probably equally as diverse. The honest answer is that it is too early to say. But those that do have what it takes are destined to go a long way.

When will EDISON deliver its outputs?

  • EDISON is currently set to run until August 2017. By this time we will have delivered our formal analysis of the Competence Framework, Body of Knowledge and Model Curriculum. However, we will have produced draft versions of these documents by early 2016 that will be made available for public review and discussion. We will ultimately have amassed a wealth of data in producing these documents and we will also have assembled a network of interested and knowledgeable individuals from various sectors and domains with strong interests in the profession. We envisage that the near-final outputs will emerge during the course of the second year of the project, in time for us to see, capture and exploit the benefits of these deliverables. The first year will largely be about awareness raising, both of the project activities and the emergent profession, and also engagement with a view to fact-finding and commenting on the works in progress.

Why do we need EDISON if there is such a demand for data scientists?

  • EDISON has been created because we feel there is a clear mismatch between the supply side and the demand side of the data scientist pipeline. Moreover, as the demand for what is understood to be data scientist grows more rapidly, this gap becomes ever wider. We believe that this model is more complex but yet addressable. The two-sides of the marketplace – education and training suppliers – and research and commercial employers on the demand side – can be much better understood and supported, and in doing so, EDISON can play a role in supporting a network or platform that helps orchestrate the players in order to maximise the matching of data scientists to jobs.

Where will EDISON make an impact?

  • In playing this matchmaking role between the activities of the educators and needs of the employers, EDISON will make an impact on both sides of the equation, and in doing so, raise the applicability and hence salaries of the data scientists.
  • EDISON will make an impact on the quality and competitiveness of academic and professional training programmes by providing a Data Science Competence Framework (CF-DS), Data Science Body of Knowledge (DS-BoK) and Data Science Model Curriculum (MC-DS) that will incorporate the best academic and industry practices and expert experience obtained through our outreach and engagement. In particular through knowledge gathered and ratified through our EDISON Liaison Groups (ELG) and Champion Universities.)

What do you mean by building the data scientist profession?

  • For all of the above efforts and activities to really hit home we believe that EDISON has also to support the process of endorsing the courses and certificates that individuals need and accrue in their quest to become the key professionals of tomorrow. This will also involve identifying and collaborating with the bodies and institutions that will endorse and ratify the professionals as they build their status.

What other services will EDISON provide to assist with the process of furthering the Data Science profession?

  • The project will establish an Education and Training platform and also an Education and Training Marketplace. The purpose of these is to support Universities in setting up new courses and to this end virtual labs with specially provide datasets will be made available.