TTÜ scientists are leading 8 million euro project for diminishing bureaucracy for businesses in EU
Tallinn University of Technology (TTÜ) scientists and the European Commission are leading a unique “The Once-Only Principle Project” (TOOP), the purpose of which is to explore and demonstrate the “once-only” principle on a cross-border pan-European scale.
For this purpose a generic federated architecture will be developed that is able to connect registries and e-government architectures in different countries. TOOP is unique in its ambition and scale, aiming to connect 60 information systems in 20 countries.
The idea of the “once-only” principle is that companies and citizens should provide any information to public bodies only once, and public bodies should share data with each other to reduce the administrative burden. Such data exchange already works well within Estonia but not yet at the EU level. The aim of TOOP is to develop the technical solutions and processes that would enable connecting public information systems in different countries, saving time and money to companies that want to do business across borders. The TOOP pilot tests in the fields of company data, e-services for businesses and online ship and crew certificates. These pilot tests will pave the way to a European-wide application of the “once-only” principle, which is expected to generate several billion euros of savings per year.
TOOP Project Coordinator and Professor of e-governance Robert Krimmer, from TTÜ Ragnar Nurkse department, states “The “once-only” principle is one of the core elements of the new EU e-government action plan. Estonia’s successful experience with “once-only” has certainly been one of the reasons that encouraged the European Commission to wish to see a similar data exchange across borders. This is a unique opportunity and honour for TTÜ to lead a project with such importance and impact at the European level.”
Government CIO Taavi Kotka confirms, “Once-only is an important principle in the Estonian zero bureaucracy project and in Estonia's EU policy. TOOP's success will contribute to having free movement of data within the EU in the future."
The European Commission launched the “Once-Only” Principle Project (TOOP) on 1st January 2017. This project is part of the EU eGovernment Action Plan 2016-2020 and will contribute towards increasing the efficiency of the Digital Single Market.
The TOOP project will test the “Once-Only” principle for businesses operating across borders. There will be three pilot projects in different areas: (1) cross-border e-Services for business mobility, (2) updating connected company data and (3) online ship and crew certificates. In the three pilot approximately 60 different information systems are participating from at least 20 European countries. The pilots will not only test the federated architecture but also provide real value for administrations and businesses by speeding up service provision and enabling SMEs to operate easily in the Digital Single Market.
TOOP has the ultimate goal of promoting cross-border cooperation among authorities and offering control and transparency opportunities regarding business operations across borders.
TOOP has a budget of 8 million euros, funded by the Horizon 2020 programme from the European Union. The consortium is composed of participants from 21 countries (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Latvia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Slovenia, Slovakia, Turkey). The project is coordinated by Ragnar Nurkse Department of Innovation and Governance in Tallinn University of Technology. Ragnar Nurkse Department of Innovation and Governance collaborates with the Department of Software Science of TTÜ.