EMREX at NordForum in April 2024

EMREX was present and held presentations at the Nordforum meeting April 2024 in Stockholm.  Nordforum is an informal collaboration initiative between organizations dealing with Student  Information Systems. The glue that keeps the group together is that all are national providers of  Student Information Systems, representing a majority of universities in each country. Nordforum  consists of people from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, the Netherlands, Norway and  Sweden.  

There were presentations about the connection between EMREX and OOTS (see separate chapter  about the Projectathon) and also of the work done by some of the partners in one of the digital  wallet Large Scale Pilots, DC4EU (Digital Credentials for Europe), where EMREX is an integral part for  delivering student credentials to the wallet. It is expected that the deliverables from the project will  be useful in many contexts. One of the deliverables is a converter between the data format used in  EMREX and Erasmus Without Paper, ELMO, and the data format used by Europass and European  digital credentials, ELM. This item will be useful also in the bridge between EMREX and OOTS which  is a good example of how projects can give benefit to each other.

Gerald Groot Roessink presenting EMREX – OOTS integration 

Johanna Westendorp, Jan-Joost Norder and Gerald Groot Roessink –  presentation on SDG regulation and OOTS

Geir Vangen presenting EMREX – Wallet integration

EMREX User Group (EUG) annual assembly 2024  

EMREX User Group’s Annual Assembly was organized 23 April 2024 in Stockholm Sweden. 

After opening the meeting and accepting the agenda etc. participants were informed about the yearly report from 2023.  

In 2023 most significant activities included the following:  

  • Expansion of the EMREX Network to new countries, and in existing countries, many new  clients joined the network.
    – In 2023, 2 new full members and 10 new clients joined the network. 
  • EMREX’s new strategy was fully implemented. 
  • Collaboration with multiple projects and bodies, for example with DC4EU, CBDS Study,  EBSI etc. 
  • Decision to have own registry (EMREG). 

A thing to mention from 2023 was also the significant increase in the number of transfers using EMREX in  Finland and in The Netherlands. Increase in Finland was over 600% from 2022 to 2023 and over 200% in  The Netherlands. 

EMREX User Group’s Executive Committees most significant plans for 2024 

  • Seek and strengthen collaboration opportunities. 
  • Investigate needs for developing the ELMO format. 
  • Update emrex.eu website. 
  • Seek to increase new members to the network. 
  • New own EMREX registry (EMREG). 

Development of a bridge between EMREX and Only Once Technical Solution (OOTS) etc. Dissemination 2024 

EMREX will do presentations on multiple events and conferences during 2024. Most significant ones are  listed below. 

  • EUNIS, in Athens (June) 
  • EAIE, Toulouse (September) 
  • GDN, San Diego (October)

Election of the Executive Committee for a period of two years (2024-2025) 

The following individuals were nominated and selected as members of the EMREX User Group’s Executive  Committee: 

Tor Fridell, Ladok, Sweden (selected as a Chairperson) 

Jan-Joost Norder, DUO, the Netherlands 

Kimmo Rautio, CSC, Finland 

Geir Vangen, Sikt, Norway 

Janina Mincer-Daszkiewicz, University of Warsaw, Poland 

Igor Drvodelic, ASHE, Croatia 

As one of the first acts of the newly elected EMREX Executive Committee, it appointed Arn Wassmann and Michael Lierath from the German HIS eG and Guido Bacharach to its Policy Group in accordance with  the current statutes. The Policy Group advises the EMREX Executive Committee on long-term strategic  issues. Michael Lierath and Guido Bacharach were also appointed to a permanent task force, which will  also support the EMREX EC in its day-to-day business. Guido Bacharach will continue his successful work  of recent years.

Projectathon in Brussels in May 2024  

On 15-17 May 2024 a Projectathon was held in Brussels for stakeholders implementing links to the  Once Only Technical System (OOTS). Members from almost the entire EMREX network participated  in this activity, either physically in Brussels or virtually. This was the fourth Once Only Projectathon,  testing solutions to support EU’s Single Digital Gateway (SDG). This meeting looked specifically at  the education and population data domains. 

Three of the processes described in the SDG regulation are within the education domain. The EMREX  network participates to offer data from EMREX to these processes. Over the past year, the  Commission has been working together with the EMREX network to build a bridge between OOTS  and EMREX. The aim of the Projectathon in May was a full testing of this from five EMREX partner  countries. 

EMREX-OOTS architecture – internal structure of the Polish node 

he testing over these days was successful, and it was shown that the EMREX-OOTS bridge enabled  the delivery of data from the EMREX nodes that participated in the test to consumers of OOTS in  several member countries. EMREX provided both structured data and PDFs as part of this test.

All in all, three successful days showed that linking existing networks can provide high value.

EMREX/OOTS team at Projectathon in Brussels 

Official certificate for the EMREX team 

EMREX at the PBSA Europe Summit 2024  

EMREX was present at the yearly European PBSA conference this May, hosted  in Amsterdam. EMREX showcased the goals, vision and how the partners could  connect and streamline their business with use of digital data. Many of the  organizations showed their interest during and after the presentation,  hopefully resulting in many new EMC’s in the near future.  

PBSA, founded as a non-profit trade association in 2003, was established to represent the interest of  companies offering employment and tenant background screening services. The Association currently  represents over 650 member companies engaged in employment and tenant background screening across the globe. Member companies range from Fortune 100 companies to small local businesses,  conducting millions of employment related and tenant background checks each year as part of the hiring  and leasing process.  

Jan-Joost Norder presenting EMREX at the PBSA Europe Summit 2024

Report from the EUNIS 2024 conference  

The 2024 EUNIS conference was held in Athens on 4-7 June. Over 250 people gathered to discuss IT  in higher education from different angles. As usual there was a wide variety of subjects ranging from  IT-security to tools in teaching and learning. And as expected several presentations concerned AI.  EUNIS is highly recommended to attend, it gives a good and quick overview of the state of the art of  IT-development in higher education! The program and many of the presentations can still be  reached here: https://eunis.org/eunis2024/

EMREX gave a presentation of the cooperation between Directorate-Generale for Digital Services  (DG DIGIT) and EMREX EC. The cooperation was about building and deploying an OOTS-EMREX  bridge so that institutions that provide an EMREX interface would be able to connect to OOTS at  minimal cost and impact (and vice versa). This was demonstrated in a so-called Projectathon in  Brussels on May 5-7 and it turned out successful. Five EMREX data sources connected to the bridge  and the information requester could fetch data. The joint work demonstrated the feasibility and  benefits of using a bridge between the OOTS and EMREX.  

  • Procedure portal systems can retrieve education data from data sources using only the  OOTS interface, without needing to be aware of the EMREX technical specifications.  EMREX data sources makes data available to users without having to be aware of the OOTS  technical interface specifications.  

The cooperation will continue with the goal to make the system production ready.

Tor Fridell, chair of the EMREX EC, presenting EMREX-OOTS bridge at EUNIS 2024

ELMO 2.0 release  

We are pleased to announce that ELMO Version 2.0 now has been released. This is a version not  backwards compatible to 1.x versions because of some changes to harmonize ELMO to other  standard formats. 

The main update is adding support for results of recognition, adding data deliveries from Enic-Naric  organizations into the EMREX network. This is solved with adding a completely new main entity to  ELMO.  

There are also some changes to the original parts of ELMO. A deprecated “level”-element has now  been removed, identifier for LearningOpportunitySpecification is now mandatory and added support  for external grading schema identifiers. Learner’s bday has been changed to dateOfBirth and ELMO  now includes support for non-latin names for learners. 

The work has started on the next version 2.1 to build in more support for Once Only Technical  System data exchange.

ELMO 2.0 recognition model

Get in touch  

EMREX portal is available at emrex.eu. To contact us write to info@emrex.eu. To get support write  to support@emrex.eu.