The objectives of CHAIN project can be divided into three main areas:
01) Define a strategy and a model for external collaboration, in close collaboration with EGI.org, which will enable operational and organisation interfacing of EGI and external eInfrastructures. This strategy will take into account current organisational models, while, regarding operational models, a peering model will be defined between Europe and other continents. Regarding some external e-Infrastructures the European partners could also act as "tutors" or "advisors" using the European background and supporting interoperable/standard solutions. This sub-objective aims to ensure the continuity of actions taken so far via separate regional projects, and avoid a disruption of the services that have been developed and deployed until now.
02) Validate this model, as a proof-of-principle, by supporting the extension and consolidation of worldwide Virtual Research Communities, which work on common areas (Bioinformatics, Chemistry, etc.) and /or increasingly require distributed facilities (e.g. large instruments, distributed data and databases, digital repositories, etc.) across the regions for trans-continental research. Examples of these communities are LHC, Radio Telescopes, Earth Sciences, Health, Emerging Diseases, etc. – all of these requiring the linking of the European researchers with the corresponding communities in multiple regions across the world. The support for the users of such existing communities will be complemented by a coordinated activity of support for the international expansion to other prospective communities that have not exploited yet the full benefits of large intercontinental e-Infrastructures.
03) Explore and propose concrete steps forward towards the coordination with other projects and initiatives (e.g. EGI.eu, EUMEDGRID-Support, EUIndiaGrid2, LinkSCEEM, PRACE, National Knowledge Network, etc.).The project will act as a worldwide policy-watch and coordination instrument, by exploring and proposing concrete steps for the coordination with other initiatives and studying the evolution of e-Infrastructures towards not only Grids and HPC but also Cloud Computing, Virtualisation, Voluntary Computing and other trends that may emerge. This interaction with other Infrastructures will also imply a strong commitment to standards' adoption.