GUIDE - Government User Identity for Europe
Procuring Authority: European Commission
GUIDE’s strategic vision is to develop an architecture that integrates local, regional, national, and pan-European Identity Management services in an interoperable manner that allows accommodating the requirements of Member States. As such the GUIDE architecture is consistent with the ‘principle of subsidiarity’. The architecture is based on a federated information infrastructure model that respects the sovereignty of Member States in Identity Management issues, rather than a hierarchical one. On this basis GUIDE seeks to inform both short- to medium-term practice of building Identity Management for eGovernment services but also in the longer term help shape the policy and legislative framework of the EU in ways that will support the emergence of pan-European eGovernment services.

GUIDE has both social scientific and technological objectives. In terms of its scientific goals it aims:

  • To create a charter of the political, policy and legal issues involved in Identity Management for eGovernment
  • To identify local, regional and national concerns regarding Identity Management
  • To define mechanisms for stimulating consensus and improving acceptance
  • To translate policy and legal frameworks governing identity management into principles of architecture technological design
  • To develop a conceptual framework on auditing and certification for eGovernment systems
  • To develop strategies for introducing and implementing an Identity Management architecture
  • To evaluate the results in pilots including acceptance rates (take-up)

The technological objectives aim to develop a federated Identity Management architecture that enables interoperability across national systems of Identity Management. They are as follows: 

  • To design the logical and technical framework of an open architecture for Identity Management
  • To select and integrate existing and emerging technologies as modules of an Identity Management architecture that ensures the interoperability of existing and evolving national solutions
  • To develop, test and validate a technical architecture supporting secure interoperability across administrations, administrations and businesses, and administrations and citizens and foster back-office process integration

GUIDE focuses on the requirements of governments through interdisciplinary research into complex, adaptive systems with the development of open platform specifications and harmonization frameworks. GUIDE’s intention is to create a European ‘dominant design’. This design will function as the foundation for further research and development, deployment and innovation activities across the EU. The methodology underpinning these activities will result in specific pilots testing the interoperability of Identity Management solutions for eGovernment. These are being developed in an integrated manner that involves Member State governments in order to create the policy, legislative, and technology conditions for a politically sustainable and socially desirable open architecture for eGovernment services in the EU.