Knowledge Junction – open access to scientific models and tools

Scientific models used by EFSA over the last 15 years have been brought together in a new EFSA community: the Knowledge Junction. The models can be shared and cited and you can submit your own. A selection of these tools are also available as web applications on the new EFSA Statistical Models Platform; just select a model, upload your data, run the analysis and view the results. Modelling plays a crucial role in scientific risk assessment today – as we explain in our new Understanding Science video (see below).

Prof Hans Verhagen, head of risk assessment and scientific support at EFSA, said: “We have set up this new community platform to make all the models we have used available to people interested in food and feed risk assessment. Our aim is to improve transparency, reproducibility and evidence reuse. Anybody is free to use these tools – for example, together with information from EFSA’s Scientific Data Warehouse.

“Importantly,” he added, “we encourage others to deposit their own supporting evidence and tools for the benefit of the wider risk assessment community. This will boost scientific capacity and further contribute to food safety in Europe.”

What are models?

To mark the launch of Knowledge Junction, EFSA has produced a video to explain the importance of models for science. We have also started a new Twitter channel @Methods_EFSA where our scientists will be sharing and engaging on news, views and tools on assessment methodology developments at EFSA and worldwide. A discussion group on LinkedIn will follow soon.

Models are simplified representations of reality that can help scientists to understand how things work or could work. A model can be something as simple as a toy train set, a map or a bus timetable. But models can be more ambitious than mere descriptions or representations of known things. They can help us to understand unknowns or predict what might happen given a certain set of conditions or circumstances. This is why they are so important to the work of risk assessors. Watch the video to find out more.

More about using Knowledge Junction

Knowledge Junction runs on the EU-funded Zenodo research-sharing platform where uploaded items get a unique Digital Object Identifier to make them citable. Submissions can include reports, datasets, images, videos, laboratory outputs, software, tools, models, code, protocols, study quality appraisal schemes, FAQs.

The contents can then be cited and re-used by EFSA’s scientists and any others preparing new risk assessments. Models and tools with added value to the risk assessment community and stakeholders will gradually be made available as web applications via the EFSA Statistical Models Platform.

For further enquiries and access to more models contact: AMU [at] efsa.europa.eu

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