status: Recognised & Endorsed

Chair (s): Jeff Christiansen, Nicola Mulder, Susan Gregurick, Wolmar Nyberg Åkerström, Elisha Wood-Charlson

Group Email: [group_email]

Secretariat Liaison: [field_secretariat_liaison]

The life sciences are becoming increasingly data intensive, owing much to the huge improvements seen in large-scale gene sequencing and other molecular “omics” techniques. There is a need for large-scale sustainable and interoperable data management and storage methods that allow secure and easy access to and reuse of these highly complex data. Simultaneously, as omics-focussed life science research projects increasingly depend on more than one type of measurement, there is a widely felt need for the ability to integrate different data types. Phenotyping, bioimaging and biosample management can all be considered part of life science data, and omics-focussed life science data systems will need to interoperate with these. Different and diverse sectors of the life sciences, such as health, food production, bioindustry and the environment experience similar issues. Interoperability between different research domains is thus a necessary condition to allow for the emergence of cross-disciplinary data. It is no surprise that the life sciences gave birth to the FAIR principles.

The Life Science Data Infrastructures Interest Group is formed to serve as a bridge between life science data infrastructures in different regions of the world and relevant RDA Interest Groups, including both specific subtopics of the life sciences such as agricultural data, marine data, structural biology, toxicogenomics, as well as generic topics that can/should be applied in the life sciences such as big data analysis, federated identity management, and data publishing.

The IG aspires to have meaningful representation from diverse geographical regions including North and South America, the EU, UK and Eastern Europe; Africa, Asia and Oceania; and will actively seek participation from under-represented groups and the global South. The IG also aims for fair gender representation and inclusivity in all its activities.


Check out our RDA Data Streams Podcast episode to learn more!


Please note. This group has transitioned from the previous RDA-ELIXIR Bridging Force IG.



Plenary participation


Key aspects of FAIR for infrastructure solutions in the biomolecular life sciences

0:00 - 0:15 Introducing the session’s topic and welcoming new members
0:15 - 0:30 A selective landscape overview of infrastructure supporting researchers in adopting the FAIR principles


Life Science Data worldwide

The session will be held at UTC - 23:30 21 June 2022 - 01:00 22 June 2022 -


Increasing Impact of RDA in the Life Sciences

Life sciences have many of their own data standards, they are constantly engaged through collaborations in order to work on new standards (e.g. BD2K, ELIXIR, GA4GH). Some of the work is indeed discipline specific. It also happens that life science organisations work on generic standards, potentially unaware of applicable work that has been done in other disciplines or in the context of inter-disciplinary organisations like RDA. This can negatively impact inter-disciplinary data and tool interoperability. The ELIXIR Bridging Force interest group has, since its inception, tried to bridge this gap by facilitating communication and transfer of best practices and ongoing discussions arising from the global perspective of RDA towards the life-sciences community, and by bringing experience from life science developments into RDA. In this session we would like to pursue options to improve this work, and to promote real-world impact of RDA recommendations in the life sciences.