|Ian Foster (UChicago)|
|Brian Athey (UMichigan)|
Panelist Clifford Lynch, Director of the Coalition for Networked Information, reminded attendees that data doesn’t have to be big to be important. A single spreadsheet can represent a tremendous research investment. Access to underlying data and tools is essential if the work is to be replicated or built upon by others without wasting effort and resources.
Serge Goldstein (Princeton) shared Princeton’s financial model for perpetual maintenance, called DataSpace, or Pay Once Store Endlessly (POSE), which is based on the premise that the cost of storage will continue to decline. Goldstein explained that the natural expiration of research data is typically attached to the tenure or life of the principal investigator. With POSE, storage can be funded long after two or four-year grant initiatives run out of money. This buys time to determine whether or not data is of interest to a broader arena.
Michael Huerta (NIH) explained the 2003 NIH data sharing policy. While sharing all data may not be useful, there are key issues to consider when deciding whether and what to share. Sylvia Spengler (NSF) said that since January 2011, NSF requires a Data Management Plan (DMP) for all grant-funded research data. An effective DMP identifies which data is worth saving for more than a couple of years, and if so, how it will be managed and shared. Plans are subject to peer-review and the review panel determines if the DMP meets the needs of the research arena. Many focus on limited terms of under 20 years, with provision for reassessment at the end of that term.
John Cobb (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) presented progress made by NSF’s DataONE/DataNet toward a federated solution and California Digital Libraries' efforts to improve data curation. He said that due to the NSF-required DMP, data management is now an ‘allowable cost,’ therefore an opportunity for universities to make money. He also said that some are giving more thought to the development of unified DMP’s that allow information to be shared across disciplines. Lynch punctuated this remark by adding that the NSF-DMP began to mobilize the community in ways that previous data mandates, such as NIH’s, had not.
More information and presentation slides are available on the SeWHiP web site, http://www.sewhip.org/. For information about CTSI, visit: http://www.ctsi.org/.