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Call for Symposium & Workshop Session Proposals: 23rd Pacific Science Congress

The 23rd Pacific Science Congress (PSC-23) will be held in Academia Sinica, Taipei on June 13-17, 2016. The main theme of the PSC-23 is “Science, Technology, and Innovation: Building a Sustainable Future in Asia and the Pacific.”

The Organizing Committee of the 23rd Pacific Science Congress is announcing a Call for Symposium & Workshop Session Proposals for the Congress. If you would like to propose a session, please submit your proposal containing requested information to the PSC-23 website here.


Please note that the deadline for submitting proposals is scheduled for October 31, 2015.


Sub-Themes for Submission include:

1.         Climate Change and Earth System Sciences
2.         Biodiversity and Natural Resources
3.         Food / Water / Energy
4.         Human Health
5.         Human Diversity and Inclusive Development
6.         Disaster Risk Reduction
7.         Science for Society: Building Green Societies
8.         Emerging Technologies

Plenary Speakers

  • Dr. Takashi Gojobori speaks on “Biodiversity and Natural Resources” (King Abdullah University of Science and Technology)
  • Dr. Sandra Harding speaks on “Human Diversity and Inclusive Development” (University of California, Los Angeles)
  • Mr. Lawrence Kent speaks on “Food / Water / Energy” (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Dr. Yuan-Tseh Lee speaks on “Science for Society: Building Green Societies” (Academia Sinica)
  • Dr. Gordon McBean speaks on “Disaster Risk Reduction” (International Council for Science, ICSU)
  • Dr. George Whitesides speaks on “Emerging Technologies” (Harvard University)
  • Dr. Chi-Huey Wong speaks on “Human Health” (Academia Sinica)
  • Dr. David Wratt QSO speaks on “Climate Change and Earth System Sciences” (Chief Scientist (Climate), National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, New Zealand).

Founded in 1920 and based in Honolulu, Hawaii, the Pacific Science Association (PSA) is a regional, non-governmental, scholarly organization that seeks to advance science and technology in support of sustainable development in the Asia-Pacific.


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Science International 2015: Big Data/Open Data

CODATA has been asked to take a leading role in Science International 2015: Big Data/Open Data.The Expert Working Group that has been tasked with producing the international science ‘accord’, that is the principal output of this initiative, is being chaired by CODATA President Geoffrey Boulton.

Science International
Science International is a new coalition of the major international science bodies – ICSU, the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP), The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), and the International Social Science Council (ISSC) – to bring its members’ combined international representation and credibility to act as a single global voice for science in the international policy arena. For the first edition of Science International, the four partner organizations have selected the issue of ‘Big Data/Open Data’.
Science International 2015: Big Data/Open Data
‘Big data’ has emerged as a major opportunity for scientific discovery, while ‘open data’ will enhance the efficiency, productivity and creativity of the public research enterprise and counteract tendencies towards the privatisation of knowledge. In addition, concurrent open publication of the data underpinning scientific papers can provide the basis of scientific ’self correction’. For organisations, individuals and society to maximise the benefits of big data, however, will depend on the extent to which there is open access to publicly-funded scientific data.

In this regard, there are a growing number of calls from various actors, both within and outside the scientific community, and from inter-governmental bodies such as the G8, the OECD and the UN, for open access to publicly-funded scientific data, especially regarding data of particular importance to major global challenges.

Full exploitation of ‘big data’, however, will also depend on the extent to which national science systems are able to develop the capacity to use it, on avoiding the creation of new ‘knowledge divides’, and on deciding which data can be made open for use and re-use.
‘Big Data/Open Data’ will therefore be the subject of the first meeting of Science International, to be held in Pretoria, South Africa, from 7-9 December 2015. The meeting will be hosted by South Africa’s Department of Science and Technology and held in parallel with the first South African Open Science Forum and a planned G77 Ministerial meeting.

At the meeting, the Science International partner organizations will agree an international science ‘accord’ on Big Data/Open Data. The accord will be prepared by an expert working group jointly appointed by the partner organizations and will be presented in Pretoria at the G77 + China Ministerial Forum and the Open Science Forum.

The meeting will also recommend a global plan for data science capacity development, with an initial focus on Africa.

Historic launch of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data

Xaiogang (Marshall) Ma, from the CODATA Early Career Data Professionals Group (ECDP), recently attended the Historic Launch of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data, in New York City on September 28th.

"The forum was held in the Jade Room of the Waldorf Astoria hotel, and lasted for three hours from 2 to 5PM, with a tight but well-organized schedule of about 10 lightning talks, four panels and about 30 commitment introductions from the partners.

 The panels and lightning talks focused on why open data is needed, how to make data open and, especially, what and the value of Open Data for The 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development and the social impact that the data can generate. I was happy to see that successful stories of Open geospatial data were mentioned several times in the lightening talks and the panels..."

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'Making Open Science a Reality': New OECD Report Published

The OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) has just released its study on ‘Making Open Science a Reality’.

This document also comprises individual country notes available here.

The report preface summarises well the significance of the study and its contents:

Science is the mother of the digital age. And yet, twenty-two years after CERN placed the World Wide Web software in the public domain, effectively creating the open internet, science itself has struggled not only to “go digital” but also to “go open”. This report, Making open science a reality reviews the progress in OECD countries in making the results of publicly funded research, namely scientific publications and research data openly accessible to researchers and innovators alike.

The report i) reviews the policy rationale behind open science and open data; ii) discusses and presents evidence on the impacts of policies to promote open science and open data; iii) explores the legal barriers and solutions to greater access to research data; iv) provides a description of the key actors involved in open science and their roles; and finally v) assesses progress in OECD and selected non-member countries based a survey of recent policy trends.

This project was carried out as a part of the activities of the OECD’s Working Party on Innovation and Technology Policy (TIP).

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Get Ready to Apply for the CODATA-RDA Research Data Science Summer School

First Introductory 'Vanilla' CODATA-RDA Research Data Science Summer School

The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, in collaboration with CODATA, RDA and TWAS, is organising a short course in the data science approaches and skills that are essential for 21st century research. The CODATA-RDA Research Data Science Summer School will be held at the ICTP, Trieste, Italy from 1st to 12th August 2016.

The ever-accelerating volume and variety of data being generated is having a huge impact on a wide variety of research disciplines, from the sciences to the humanities. The international, collective ability to create, share and analyse vast quantities of data is having a profound, transformative effect. This 'Data Revolution' offers great opportunities for students with modern data skills, both in conducting their research and in entering a jobs market where those skills are in demand.

Contemporary research – particularly when addressing the most significant, transdisciplinary research challenges – cannot be done effectively without a range of skills relating to data. This includes the principles and practice of Open Science and research data management and curation, the use of a range of data platforms and infrastructures, large scale analysis, statistics, visualisation and modelling techniques, software development and annotation and more. We define ‘Research Data Science’ as the ensemble of these skills.

The application form will be made available from 19 October 2015.  The deadline for applications is 18 April 2016.

For more information see the full presentation of this event on the ICTP website

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