More and more research institutions share EUDAT’s vision of data shared and preserved across borders and disciplines as 10 contracts for implementing the B2HANDLE service were signed in 2020. 

In the web of FAIR data, persistent identifiers (PID) are a key ingredient.The EUDAT B2HANDLE service supports communities and research infrastructures in the transition to the web of FAIR by allowing them in registering and minting PIDs. 

The customers for the B2HANDLE services span across scientific domains ranging from climatology, earth sciences to multidisciplinary areas and across Europe coming from the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Italy, Lithuania and the UK. 

Commenting on the growing popularity of the service, EUDAT CDI Technical Coordinator Mark van de Sanden said, “Persistent Identifiers are a key component in a FAIR ecosystem. The new contracts show the added value of the B2HANDLE service in supporting communities and RI in this transition”.

B2HANDLE manages persistent identifiers enabling repository and community managers to register identifiers to research data, instruments and other scientific artefacts, and thus making it possible to reference or cite them in the future. B2HANDLE can be used by middleware applications, end-user tools and other services to reliably identify digital objects over longer time spans and through changes in object location or ownership. 

The B2HANDLE service encompasses management of identifier namespaces (Handle prefixes), establishment of policies and business workflows, operation of Handle servers and technical services, and a user-friendly Python library for general interaction with Handle servers and EUDAT-specific extensions.

B2HANDLE is mostly transparent to end-users, shielding them from the complexity of infrastructure details. In the background, B2HANDLE operates as a federation and is based on policies that aim to ensure high availability and global resolution via the Handle resolution network and by cross-site mirroring of handles. 

B2HANDLE has a flexible handle record structure supporting RI and data specific Kernel Type Information. The B2HANDLE service is used within the EUDAT B2SAFE service to automate the registration of persistent identifiers within the PID and data replication policy. Also the B2SHARE service uses the B2HANDLE service for registering PIDs for datasets and individual files contained within the datasets.  

Check out the EUDAT B2HANDLE service now: