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European Health and Digital Executive Agency (HaDEA)
Call for proposalsClosed

Interconnection of backbone networks for cloud federations – Studies


Publication date
12 October 2022 in Funding & tenders portal
Opening date
Deadline model
Deadline date
21 March 2023, 17:00 (CET)
Programme Sector
Connecting Europe Facility 2
Digital technologyDigital transformationEUFundedProposals


Among others, CEF Digital aims to stimulate the commercial offering of cloud services throughout the EU. The cloud capacity needs be strengthened and users provided with access to multiple computing resources as a result of the projects supported by CEF. New cloud infrastructures would also gradually need to be interconnected with other cloud, high-performance computing (HPC) and edge infrastructures.

The studies under this topic should explore the needs and prepare for future deployment of Gigabit links for the interconnection between socio-economic drivers, which are public administrations or public or private entities entrusted with the operation of services of general interest (SGIs) or of services of general economic interest (SGEIs), and backbone networks for cloud federations. Currently, market forces are not providing sufficient answers to the challenge of adequate interconnection with cloud providers. Future deployments should take place where existing infrastructure cannot satisfy proper seamless functioning of resources from different providers, and also where there is a lack of the necessary redundancy to guarantee the reliability and resilience of cloud connectivity that can ensure adequate, safe and secure connectivity for the Gigabit society.

The studies funded under this topic should also cover future investment needs and required technology for the interconnection of cloud, HPC and edge infrastructures.The priority is the identification of shortages that prevent the EU from holding digital independence while implementing current state of the art of technology.


The applicants may apply for grants covering one or more of the following activities:

  • Analysis of investment needs related to the development and deployment of cross-border and national infrastructures for cloud interconnections as well as cloud interconnections with HPC and edge infrastructures at both the physical (i.e. very high capacity networks) and functional levels (i.e. management systems, software-defined infrastructures) for public sector end-users and private actors operating data infrastructures for services of general public interest across the EU. Analysis should also consider contribution to green policy objectives.
  • Analysis of economic sovereignty of deployed alternatives. This covers the analysis of total cost of ownership, the relevant items that result in the extraction of the funding from the required value-chains, as well as contribution to green policy objectives.
  • Analysis of technological needs and carbon footprint relevant for the interconnection of the aforementioned networks and resources.
  • Analysis of cybersecurity risks that future operators of essential services related to connectivity involved in the interconnection of cloud infrastructures would need to address.
  • Any preparatory work required prior to signing a contract with a supplier for the deployment of backbone networks for cloud federations (e.g., dataflow analysis, topographic definitions, analysis of rights of way).

Public administrations or public and private entities entrusted with the operation of SGIs or SGEIs should be the end users of the future infrastructures foreseen through the studies.