The European Commission IDABC (thankfully short for Interoperable Delivery of European eGovernment Services to public Administrations, Business and Citizens) has delivered their draft of version 2.0 of the Draft European Interoperability Framework. The first release came in 2004 and inputs on the revised version have been submitted and considered since, not all without controversy. The page to which I linked provides links to some of those inputs.
The IDABC is seeking comments on this draft [PDF]:
Everyone who sees interoperability as an effective means to provide better pan-European eGovernment services is invited to read the draft document and to provide feedback on its content by sending comments to firstname.lastname@example.org by the 22nd of September 2008 at the latest.
IDABC is interested in your reactions and contributions. A summary of reactions will be published on this website and will constitute another input into the EIF elaboration.
The EIF v2.0 will take the form of an official Commission position with the publication of a Communication from the Commission to the Council and to the Parliament by the end of 2008.
The new version of the Architecture Guidelines document will be prepared in parallel starting before the end of 2008 and to be completed before the end of 2009.
In my opinion, it is very important that Europeans who are interested in open standards and interoperability look at, comment, and, if appropriate, express their support for this draft or portions thereof.
Through the grapevine I have heard that the usual suspects who oppose open standards and support the “buy all your products from a single vendor and use the specifications they dictate” philosophy of interoperability plan to come out against portions of this draft.
Do not let their voices drown out yours if this is important to you. You have a little bit more than two months in which to comment. Encourage others to do so as well.
A good resource to understand this draft of EIF 2.0 is the information from the IDABC EIF Info Day, including the presentations. Note that the presentations, being final documents, are all in PDF format.