ELIXIR recognises FAIR Cookbook for enabling data interoperability
December 15, 2023

On 14 December 2023, ELIXIR has announced the life science data and interoperability resources joining its prestigious list of Core Data Resources, ELIXIR Deposition Databases, and Recommended Interoperability Resources. Among them is the FAIR Cookbook, a resource co-lead by ELIXIR-UK, developed in collaboration with Nodes from Luxembourg, Swiss and Spain, and with the participation of the US NIH Office of Data Science Strategy.

A set of high-quality and trustworthy resources

Core Data Resources, ELIXIR Deposition Databases and Recommended Interoperability Resources form a well-respected set of trustworthy resources, which help raise resource visibility and provide guidance to users and organisations such as research journals and funders. Since 2018, the European Research Council has encouraged grantees to make use of all three categories of ELIXIR recommended resources.

The FAIR Cookbook was selected as a Recommended Interoperability Resources (RIR) by an independent panel of international reviewers. ELIXIR RIRs are European tools and registries that help make scientific research findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable (FAIR). Accessible to all free of charge, they are often referenced by research funding agencies as an instrument for researchers to fulfil their data management requirements and advance research. A comprehensive evaluation process ensures that each RIR satisfies fundamental criteria, such as establishing connections between data and other resources, acquiring metadata, creating the infrastructure needed to build integrable data collections and using interoperability resources to support delivery of FAIR principles.

“The addition of the FAIR Cookbook to the ELIXIR RIR is a notable status of service maturity and a badge of impact to the research communities,” underlines Dr Wei Gu, Scientific Coordinator and Deputy Head of ELIXIR Luxembourg. “For example, it means that this service will be included in international policy strategies such as the European Research Council Open Research Data Management Plan.”

The FAIR Cookbook

The FAIR principles have become a global norm for good data stewardship and a prerequisite for reproducibility in the public and private sectors. To address the need for specific and practical guidance that helps users to make and keep data FAIR in the Life Sciences, data managers professionals from ELIXIR and pharma have built an online resource named the FAIR Cookbook.

This resource guides researchers and data stewards in their FAIRification journey, providing hands-on step-by-step examples to follow. This collection of recipes on the FAIR components and the infrastructure needed offers a deep dive into the technical aspects of FAIR data management. It also provides policymakers and trainers with practical cases they can recommend and use in their educational material. The FAIR Cookbook is already a recommended resource by the IMI/IHI and the Horizon Europe Health programmes, and is a core component of the new ELIXIR strategy programme. “The FAIR Cookbook is an essential resource for and by FAIR doers and we are very proud that ELIXIR-LU has contributed to its development in collaboration with other Nodes and collaborators from all over Europe,” concludes Wei Gu.

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