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The Potential of Big Data Applications for the Healthcare Sector


At the industrial Big Data Conference Big Data Minds in Berlin, Prof. Sonja Zillner presented "The Potential of Big Data Applications for the Healthcare Sector". With the presentation of the BIG Data Public Private Forum discussed the challenges of BIG Data and the emerging Data Economy for the Healthcare Sector. In particular,  the results of the BIG user needs and requisites study for the Big Data applications in the Healthcare Sector were introduced. The study shows that Big Data technologies can be used to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare delivery.  However, the realization of Big Data applications in the healthcare sector is challenging. In order to take advantage of the promising opportunities of Big Data technologies, a clear understanding of driver and constraints, user needs and requirements is needed.

The feedback of the audience was very good and several participants of the conference requested the access of the BIG Requirements Study.


EU Big Data Value in Heidelberg Workshop

At the Heidelberg Final Event Workshop, Sebnem Rusitschka demonstrated the value of big data by presenting present and future use cases for Siemens in Europe.
The slides are now available on SlideShare (see above) and directly as PDF.

BYTE Community Overview in Heidelberg

The BYTE community stands for "Big data roadmap and cross-disciplinarY community for addressing socieTal Externalities". Edward Curry gave a project overview at the BIG Final Event in Heidelberg.
The slides are now available on SlideShare (see above) and directly as PDF.

Intelligent Data Analytics Roadmap of Austria

The Advisory Board “Conquering DataIdentifying the Data Challenges of the Future” roadmapping project takes place in Austria from 2013 to 2014. Board member Anna Fensel, a representative of the BIG project, reports:

The aim of the "Conquering Data" project is to conduct a roadmap study in the area of Intelligent Data Analytics. It is founded by the FFG, the Austrian Research Promotion Agency. The project adheres to the FFG funding scheme "IKT der Zukunft: Daten durchdringen", which means "I.C.T. (information and communications technology) of the future: penetrating data".

To produce the roadmap, the project has reached out to the relevant stakeholders in Austria, both online and by holding three face-to-face workshops with national research and technology experts from academia and industry. The perspective of the industry and business communities has also been collected using structured interviews with representatives of multinational companies active in Austria, SMEs and selected experts from the national umbrella organizations and special interest groups.

In October 2013 in Salzburg, at one of the project's workshops, Anna Fensel gave a talk "The Semantic Web Exists. What Next?", discussing the recent developments in the fields of Semantic Web, Linked Open Data and Big Data, particularly in relation to Austria and its specifics (e.g. large number of SMEs, tourism and marketing as important economy sectors, etc.).

The slides of Anna Fensel's talk can be found here: http://www.slideshare.net/annafensel/the-semantic-web-exists-what-next-40165845

The final version of the study of the project "Conquering Data in Austria" has been presented at European Data Forum in 2014 in Athens, and is downloadable from the project's website: http://www.conqueringdata.com.


BIG Final Event Workshop

Programme of the BIG Final Event Workshop co­located with ISC Big Data in Heidelberg 


The Big Project

Welcome and Introduction Nuria De Lama (ATOS Spain)  


Key Technology Trends for Big Data in Europe 

Edward Curry (Research Fellow at Insight @ NUI Galway) 



The Big Data Public Private Partnership 

Nuria De Lama (ATOS Spain)



Panel discussion about a common Big Data Stakeholder Platform 

Martin Strohbach (AGT International)  

● The PPP Stakeholder Platform

(Nuria De Lama

● Hardware and Network for Big Data

(Ernestina Menasalvas, RETHINK BIG EU Project) 

● Tackling BIG DATA Externalities

(Kush Wadhwa, Trilateral Research BYTE EU Project) 

● The value of the Stakeholder platform

(Sebnem Rusitschka, Siemens, BIG and BYTE Project) 


Networking and Break-out Sessions


update will follow



Big Data Applications in the Healthcare Domain Presentation at IEEE IRI 2014

From 13th to 15th August 2014, the 15th IEEE International Conference on Information Reuse and Integration took place in San Francisco, USA. Sabrina Neururer had the chance to present the accepted paper entitled “Towards a Technology Roadmap for Big Data Applications in the Healthcare Domain” to a broad public on the first day of the conference. Very good feedback was received that confirmed the results of the presented study and highlighted the huge impact of Big Data applications on the healthcare domain. Technical challenges, such as semantic annotation, data sharing, data quality, privacy and security, and open R&D questions were discussed. Also non-technical challenges for Big Data Applications, such as user acceptance, were debated intensively.


BIG Project Final Event Workshop co-located with ISC BIG DATA 2014

Big Data Project Final Event Workshop

In this workshop we will present the results of the BIG project including analysis of foundational Big Data research technologies, technology and strategy roadmaps to enable business to understand the potential of Big Data technologies across different sectors, and the necessary collaboration and dissemination infrastructure to link technology suppliers, integrators and leading user organizations.

Agenda: includes speakers from Atos, AGT International, OKF and SIEMENS

PPP approved: the Big Project is pleased to have achieved its goal of creating a Big Data Public Private Partnership (PPP). The PPP will be signed by Neelie Kroes on October 13th and will allow industry to influence Europe's funding policy. Learn more about it in Session 2 of our workshop

The workshop is highly interactive, if you wish to give a position statement, please contact [email protected] (please include [finalevent] in the subject).

Registration is still open (and free) at our workshop website

Date: September 30, 2014

Time: 9 a.m.–5:30 p.m.

Venue: Heidelberg Marriott Hotel, Heidelberg, Germany

Co-located with: ISC BigData 2014

The workshop is free to attend; lunch and refreshments will be provided by the BIG Project. In case of questions regarding the registration for the event email to [email protected] (please include [finalevent] in the subject of your email for faster response).

Big Data Healthcare Applications Presentation at MIE 2014

MIE 2014

At September 1st at the 25th European Medical Informatics Conference (MIE 2014), Dr. Sonja Zillner presented "User Needs and Requirements Analysis for Big Data Healthcare Applications"  which was received very well . As the realization of the promising opportunities of big data technologies for healthcare relies on the integrated view on heterogeneous health data sources in high quality and the availability of legal frameworks for secure data sharing,  an intensive discussion of how to address the mentioned health data management challenges was triggered.


Commission Communication "Towards a thriving data-driven economy"

The European Commission Communication "Towards a thriving data-driven economy" has been adopted on 2 July 2014. Its aim is to focus on the positive aspects of big data and to promote it to leaders, according to Vice President @NeelieKroesEU. An excerpt from the press release:

The main problems identified in public consultations on big data are:

  1. Lack of cross-border coordination

  2. Insufficient infrastructure and funding opportunities

  3. A shortage of data experts and related skills

  4. Fragmented and overly complex legal environment

Main concrete actions proposed today to solve these problems:

  1. A Big Data public-private partnership that funds “game-changing” big data ideas, in areas such as personalised medicine and food logistics.

  2. Create an open data incubator (within the Horizon 2020 framework), to help SMEs set up supply chains based on data and use cloud computing more.

  3. Propose new rules on "data ownership" and liability of data provision for data gathered via Internet of Things (Machine to Machine communication)

  4. Mapping of data standards, identifying potential gaps

  5. Establish a series of Supercomputing Centres of Excellence to increase number of skilled data workers in Europe

  6. Create network of data processing facilities in different Member States

See also

Two Accepted Papers in the Health Sector

Two new publications by Sonja Zillner et al. have gotten accepted on international conferences. See http://big-project.eu/publications for all project publications.
User Needs and Requirements Analysis for Big Data Healthcare Applications (MIE 2014)
The realization of big data applications that allow improving the quality and efficiency of healthcare care delivery is challenging. In order to take advantage of the promising opportunities of big data technologies, a clear understanding of user needs and requirements of the various stakeholders of healthcare, such as patients, clinicians and physicians, healthcare provider, payors, pharmaceutical industry, medical product suppliers and government, is needed.
Our study is based on internet, literature and market study research as well as on semi-structured interviews with major stakeholder groups of healthcare delivery settings. The analysis shows that big data technologies could be used to align the opposing user needs of improved quality with improved efficiency of care. However, this requires the integrated view of various heterogeneous data sources, legal frameworks for data sharing and incentives that foster collaboration.
Towards a Technology Roadmap for Big Data Applications in the Healthcare Domain (IEEE IRI HI)
Big Data technologies can be used to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare delivery. The highest impact of Big Data applications is expected when data from various healthcare areas, such as clinical, administrative, financial, or outcome data, can be integrated. However, as of today, the seamless access to the various healthcare data pools is only possible in a very constrained and limited manner. For enabling the seamless access several technical requirements, such as data digitalization, semantic annotation, data sharing, data privacy and security as well as data quality need to be addressed. In this paper, we introduce a detailed analysis of these technical requirements and show how the results of our analysis lead towards a technical roadmap for Big Data in the healthcare domain.



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by Dr. Radut