Home Resources FAQ What is FAIR?

The FAIR principles were designed with data-driven and machine-assisted open science in mind. The final aim of following FAIR principles is that machines as well as people can Find, Access, Interoperate and thus Reuse each other’s research objects. In the original FAIR paper by Wilkinson et al. (2016) the principles were formulated but (consciously) no details on implementation choices were included. Soon, it appeared that deviations from the intentional meaning of the authors were circulating. Although this was a predictable development, a second paper will be published in which the FAIR principles are revisited, including some of the apparent circulating misperceptions.

Many, if not all, of the original designers of the FAIR principles are now involved in GO FAIR and therefore it can be safely assumed that the interpretation of the FAIR guiding principles as accepted in GO FAIR is as close to the original intention as possible.

There are also clear examples of institutes or networks that were already promoting or implementing FAIR principles “avant la lettre” (CERN, RDA, AGU to name a few examples). This should mitigate the misperception that FAIR was claimed as some new revolutionary concept. It is much rather a practical ‘attractor’ for FAIR-minded people and institutions to eventually converge on the needed steps to reach a fully functional and globally operational Internet of FAIR Data and Services.