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European Cloud, why we need it

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Why we need a European cloud

A sustainable and fair digital economy needs a rock-solid foundation. This is why, together with the Sustainable Digital Infrastructure Alliance (SDIA) and Quanza, we’re working on the first building blocks of a sustainable and open-source European cloud infrastructure, starting in Amsterdam. And it matters more than you might think.

The digital economy is rapidly growing and ever-expanding. It’s already a part of almost every aspect of our lives and it will shape our future in ways we never thought were possible. So now, more than ever, we need to think about a digital infrastructure that can support this growth sustainably. And we also need to make sure this growth benefits the many instead of the few.

Fair, transparent & sustainable

We believe it’s time for a European cloud, along with a sustainable, high-quality infrastructure that will last decades. A cloud that reflects our European values of openness, transparency, fairness and sustainability. We believe such a European cloud is not only possible, it’s essential. And this is why we’re taking the first steps with the Cloud of Amsterdam.

But before we dive into what we’re currently doing, we should start with the problem itself. Currently, the cloud market is dominated by a handful of tech giants. And all of these companies are building separate infrastructures for their cloud services, with different standards (APIs). It makes sense for them to do so, but one standard can do the job just fine. It’s actually a giant waste of resources if you think about it. And it also leaves consumers and companies with very little choice in cloud service providers. 

Using Europe’s already existing infrastructure, we can create a cloud platform that is fair and transparent. And of course also in line with the EU’s high standards and goals surrounding data privacy and sustainability. A European cloud will create a competitive market and freedom of choice in cloud services that are currently bundled and limited to a handful of providers.

Bottom-up

However, an entire European cloud and its infrastructure can’t be created in a top-down way. This is why we’re starting local, with the Cloud of Amsterdam. Alongside a similar pilot in Berlin, we’re working on a sustainable, open-source Kubernetes-as-a-Service cloud platform. We’re using existing infrastructure, refurbished hardware and we also make sure that the excess heat is being put to good use. It will be transported to warm a nearby child daycare center.

The SDIA has developed blueprints for different business models, software, and a go-to-market strategy. And with the support of the City of Amsterdam, we’re proudly working on the first building blocks for a European Cloud, while also providing local businesses new opportunities.

Join the movement

Let’s build the future, together. By connecting the regions one by one, we can work towards connecting the whole of Europe. We’re looking for entrepreneurs and local and regional governments to help us realize an inclusive and open-source cloud for everyone in the EU.

We'd love to hear from you!