Design Principles

At the core of iSHARE lies a vision for open, federated, and interoperable data sharing, ensuring data accessibility for all users, both new and established, without the dominance of any single entity. To understand the practical application of data spaces for businesses, it’s essential to explore the different layers involved:

Layer 1 - Applications and Users

Every data space is driven by a practical use case where data exchange directly impacts stakeholders, driving demands and the resources needed for implementation. Some examples include:

  • Sustainability Reports: for secure access to energy, building and energy label data.

  • CO2 Reports and Advice: to reduce CO2 emissions in logistics.

  • Traffic and Water Management Inspection (IVW): for road safety through data collection on transported goods.

Layer 2 – Data Space Building Blocks

Building blocks are crucial for facilitating data exchange in an open and federated manner. They provide:

  • Data Sovereignty and Trust: to ensure data stays within authorised boundaries.

  • Data Value Creation: to maximise data utility and profitability.

  • Data Space Governance: for structured oversight.

  • Data Interoperability: for standardising communication protocols.

Layer 3 – Data Availability

Data sources within a data space require access control, software, and API authorisations. Different classifications of data include:

  • Public/Open data: No access control or usage restrictions are necessary.

  • Licensed data: Access control based on conditions.

  • Business confidential data: Specific policies required.

  • Consumer confidential data: Specific access policies are necessary for privacy reasons.

Together, these layers facilitate secure and sovereign data exchange, certification, and governance, fostering collaboration across Europe and beyond.

How iSHARE Lays the Foundation for Collaborative Partnerships?

iSHARE enables the important layer of trust in data sharing by providing a base layer of requirements and establishing agreements aimed at enhancing exchange conditions and empowering new forms of collaboration. The decentralized iSHARE Trust Framework gives complete control to data owners. Some practical examples include:

Data Space for Sustainability of Non-Residential Buildings (DVU):

The DVU (Datastelsel Verduurzaming Utiliteit) data space aims to enhance energy efficiency in Dutch businesses. It provides quick access and analysis of energy usage, improving data accessibility and security. It allows comparisons of energy consumption per square meter across different building types.


i4Trust, a collaboration between iSHARE Foundation, FIWARE, and FundingBox, aims to speed up data space development in Europe. It offers an adoption acceleration program providing funding, technical support, and mentoring.

Basic Data Infrastructure (BDI):

The Basic Data Infrastructure (BDI) expands Data Spaces into the physical domain, aligning with conventional and innovative data sharing methods vital for operations and supply chains. It relies on comprehensive agreements for automated and secure communication. Additionally, BDI fosters agreements on language and concepts, enhancing communication by incorporating semantics for automated processing and mutual understanding of data formats.

iSHARE Interoperability: A Path to European Adoption for Data Sharing

The true realisation of this vision occurs as more companies embrace the iSHARE Trust Framework as their preferred base layer and standard for data exchange. This evolution signifies a pivotal moment in shaping the future of data exchange and governance.

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