September 20, 2005


Oak Ridge, TN – The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) and the Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDE) were recently cited in a European Commission study as key information systems that could serve as models in the development of a European Union-focused energy portal. ETDE is a multilateral information exchange agreement to which OSTI serves as the Operating Agent.


The May 2005 report, "Energy RTD Information Systems in the ERA (European Research Area)," found that, "Today's situation regarding EU energy RTD (research and technological development) information systems is no longer satisfactory. To meet future challenges, a clear structure and strengthening of coordination and branding are needed."


The study acknowledged that the interchange of scientific knowledge is essential and that, "At present there is no European portal on energy RTD that functions as a gateway to energy RTD sites across Europe."


In reaching its findings, the study issued positive comments regarding OSTI's activities: "Many respondents and interviewees refer to the USA 's situation as a role model for Europe. Access to government-funded energy RTD is ensured in the USA by the Technical Information Management Programme (TIMP) (OSTI's former budget title) of the US Department of Energy."


The International Energy Agency ETDE program, managed by OSTI since 1987, was also highlighted as a key international information system. Its ETDEWEB database contains more than 3.6 million citations to worldwide R&D. OSTI receives direction on ETDE matters from the ETDE Executive Committee, made up of delegates from each of its 16 member countries. The study concluded that, "ETDEWEB is clearly the information system of reference; many national websites on energy RTD link to ETDEWEB. At EU level, there is no such central energy RTD information system. The study recommended " . . . partnerships with international organisations and knowledge-management initiatives such as the International Energy Agency's Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDE)."


"OSTI and ETDE appreciate the recognition and hope that opportunities for collaboration will result," said Brian Hitson, Associate Director of OSTI, and Chairman of the ETDE Executive Committee.


The study can be viewed at: (4.48-MB PDF)


Last updated: 9/30/2005