13 Jul 2023 Publications

Interaction Needs and Goals of Nano Safety Projects and Programs

Interaction Needs and Goals of Nano Safety Projects and Programs

Project Deliverable by BNN
Project: NanoCommons, Grant Agreement No. 731032 (Topic “INFRAIA-02-2017 – Integrating Activities for Starting Communities”)

Date of publication: 13 July 2019
Areas: Scientific Communication / Alliances & Clustering
BNN team involvement: Beatriz Alfaro Serrano, Andreas Falk
DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.3603151


The Horizon 2020 project NanoCommons aimed to establish a long-term infrastructure to benefit nanotechnology and nanosafety research. This means that the data, tools and services integrated and/or developed during the project’s duration should remain live and usable beyond its lifetime. This has been a substantial issue for European Union (EU) projects to date: in many cases, the data remains disparate and poorly accessible, and as such essentially loses any potential for re-use.

To address these issues, NanoCommons actively worked towards gaining value from and adding value to EU, National and International nanotechnology and nanosafety projects, by enhancing the openness and FAIRness (Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability and Re-usability) of their data. NanoCommons provided value through the integration of data, tools and services that will be used to meet the needs of, and add value to, the different stakeholder groups, which are presented in detail in Deliverable D1.2 – Dissemination Strategy. At the same time, NanoCommons added value to the outputs of partners, participating projects and other stakeholders through the enrichment of the data and tools integrated within the NanoCommons KnowledgeBase. Such enrichment may refer, in the case of scientific data, to enabling relevant data harvesting and combination with data from publicly available resources. This can lead to more robust analysis, result refinement, the uncovering of hidden patterns, or in the case of modelling the refinement and calibration of the produced models. For the tools and services offered through NanoCommons, the added value will translate into their further development through the use of varied types of data and the experience gained from use in different nanoscience fields and the feedback received from users.

Of great importance to meet these goals was the close interaction and collaboration of NanoCommons with other EU, national and international projects, whose datasets were essential to delivering on the remit and promise of NanoCommons, and whose integration was facilitated via the NanoCommons tools. The interactions with other projects also supported NanoCommons partners to fully understand the needs of the individual projects, and how NanoCommons tools and services can meet these needs and those of the wider stakeholder community (academia, industry, regulatory agencies, the public who need access to high-quality datasets) and provide essential feedback in order to determine how the NanoCommons tools and services can be improved to meet the highest possible standards.

This included a continuous cycle of interaction, similar to that of data-driven innovation shown in Figure 1. The interaction began from a disruption (need) that needs to be addressed. Based on the feedback from the specific stakeholder, NanoCommons identified and planned the best way forward to address that need and create positive impact and added value (e.g., from re-use of existing data) through a number of iterations of the cycle based on updated feedback. The overall results can be used to meet similar needs of other stakeholders, thus continuously expanding the services provided by NanoCommons.

For the presented procedure to be successful, NanoCommons must identify the community needs for integrated resources and tools. This has been achieved through implementation of an online survey (see Annex 1 of the deliverable linked below). This survey also enabled the members of the nanoscience community to set the course of actions and tools and services offered by NanoCommons through prioritisation of their needs. The survey results were used to define a plan and process for the interaction with interested users and other EU funded and national and international programs and bodies, in order to meet the identified needs and iteratively implement interactions and actions.


This deliverable focussed on the identification of the tools and services needed by the entire nano-community and how NanoCommons was able to identify potential stakeholders that would derive value from and add value to the NanoCommons Knowledgebase. Based on the results of the NanoCommons online survey, the consortium actively worked towards integrating or developing the requested tools and establishing collaborations with relevant projects to promote NanoCommmons services and tools. The efforts of the NanoCommons partners continuously aligned and adapted the project offerings based on the emerging and changing needs of all stakeholders.

Taking into consideration the results obtained in this deliverable, the project consortium planned the remaining steps for the rest of the project’s duration.

All NanoCommons public deliverables are available  here.