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International Data Week 2018: The Digital Frontiers of Global Science, 22-26 October 2018, Gaborone, Botswana

The second edition of International Data Week (IDW 2018) will be held on 22-26 October 2018 in Gaborone, Botswana. Hosted by the Botswana Open Science and Open Data Forum, IDW 2018 will bring together data professionals and researchers from all disciplines and from all parts of the globe.

Co-organized by the ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA), the ICSU World Data System (WDS) and the Research Data Alliance (RDA), this landmark event will address the theme of ‘The Digital Frontiers of Global Science’. In a hyperconnected world where the internet is pervasive and web technologies are driving major changes in our lives, research has become more than ever before digital and international.  Furthermore, the major societal and scientific challenges facing humanity in this digital age are profoundly global in character, requiring the participation of researchers from all countries and disciplines. The data revolution is also a major source of the scientific opportunities to address these issues but to realise these potentials the frontiers of science, data analysis and stewardship must be advanced.  Likewise, the data revolution must be inclusive, benefitting all,  and harnessing all energies: no parts of the world and no disciplines should be left behind.

The following themes will be encompassed within the conference’s scope:

  • frontier issues for research in a global and digital age;
  • applications, progress and challenges of data intensive research;
  • data infrastructure and enabling practices for international and collaborative research.

Like its predecessor, IDW 2018 will bring together data scientists, researchers from all disciplines, industry leaders, entrepreneurs, policy makers and data stewards.  All areas of research are in scope, including the social sciences, humanities, and business and management sciences. Similarly, the applications of data outside of research will also be considered.  The event will be a rich week of science and data, featuring world renowned keynote speakers, plenary panels and discussions, the presentation of high quality research and practical working sessions for international collaborations.  IDW 2018 combines the 12th RDA Plenary Meeting, the biannual meeting of the research data community, and SciDataCon 2018, the scientific conference addressing the frontiers of data in research.  To a greater degree than at IDW 2016 in Denver, Colorado, the events will be integrated, such that each day will feature an inspiring and engaging range of activities.

Botswana, Africa and the World

The meeting will be held in Gaborone, the capital city of Botswana.  This is an excellent location for this compelling international conference:

  • The fundamental role of data for research, for economic development and ecological sustainability are recognised as important and are supported by the government, research institutions and community.
  • The government of Botswana has a strong and forward looking policy to support education, technology, development and research.
  • Botswana is active and well-integrated in regional (Southern African Development Community: SADC), African and international collaboration in various areas of research and in data activities.
  • The Botswana university and research sector is advancing greatly as a result of these policies and engagements.
  • Gaborone is easy to get to, with connecting flights for international participants from Johannesburg (JNB), Nairobi (NBO) and Addis Ababa (ADD), and boasts attractive venues and excellent quality, competitively priced hotels.
  • Botswana is one of the safest countries in the world according to the Global Peace Index: http://visionofhumanity.org/indexes/global-peace-index/.  Since independence in 1966, Botswana maintained a stable representative democracy, with a consistent record of uninterrupted democratic elections and ranking 35 (out of 176 countries) in the Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016
  • Gaborone offers a pleasant location and attractions; in the north of the country, there are unique UNESCO sites for participants who wish to visit before or after the conference.


Organisers

The local and international organisers are:

Local Organising Committee
International Data Week will be locally led by the University of Botswana. The university will deliver the IDW through a committee comprising of a consortium of research institutions, public and private organizations.  This consortium includes, national Open Science and Open data Forum Department of Research Science and Technology (DRST), Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST), Botswana University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (BUAN), Botho University (BU), Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH), Botswana Institute for Technology, Research and Information (BITRI), Botswana Communications Regulatory Authority (BOCRA), Botswana Fibre Networks (BOFINET), Department of Information Technology (DIT), Joint Minds Consult (JMC), Botswana Library Consortium (BLC), National Food Technology Research Centre (NFTRC).

ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA):

ICSU-CODATA was established in 1966. Its membership is comprised of National Academies, Science Councils, international Scientific Unions, and related organizations that care about data. Its focus is on creating both a culture and a framework of standards, agreements and protocols that enable data to be shared and reused.

ICSU World Data System (ICSU-WDS):
ICSU-WDS was established in 2008 (its predecessor bodies were established in 1957). Its membership is comprised of data repositories, data service providers, and their partners. Its focus is on identifying, creating, and sustaining institutions that provide stewardship, long-term preservation, and access to data.

Research Data Alliance (RDA):

RDA was established in 2013 by several funding agencies in Europe, the United States, and Australia. Its membership is comprised of individuals and organizations (private and non-profit). Its focus is on the detailed implementation of policies, practices, and technologies (i.e., infrastructure) that lower barriers to data exchange

Contact Information:

More about International Data Week 2016


Save the Date: 19-20 March 2018, Pre-RDA Symposium in Göttingen, 'The critical role of university RDM infrastructure in transforming data to knowledge'

All over the world universities and libraries have started the task of developing research data services. Ideally such initiatives aim to result in a complete service portfolio covering the entire research lifecycle: Support in writing proposals and data management plans, repository infrastructures for the storage of data, support in publishing data, assignment of persistent identifiers, lecturing in data management, etc. This broad scope means that such services are often seen as requiring a joint effort from from university, library, IT center, faculties and other stakeholders.

Currently nowhere in the world such a complete support scenario has been established. It is timely for actors in the various dimensions of such initiatives internationally to share their experiences, research and insights.

In this symposium we will explore the topic and hear research papers, practice papers and lightening talks from organisations that have started to offer such services in whole or in part on their campus. The symposium will provide a forum for universities and libraries to share their experience and to learn from each other.

The symposium will take place as a precursor event to the RDA plenary meeting in Berlin, 21.-23. March 2018 and will be co-organised by CODATA, the Committee on Data of the International Council for Science. Attendance will be both by invitation and open registration. A call for abstracts and other contributions will be released shortly.

 


Deadline Approaching: Apply for CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science, São Paulo, 4-15 December 2017: Deadline 22 September

Applications are invited to participate in the CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science which will be held at ICTP-SAIFR, São Paulo, Brazil, 4-15 December 2017.

Further information about the São Paulo edition of the CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science is available at http://www.ictp-saifr.org/?page_id=15270

To apply you must use the online form which is available here http://ictp-saifr.org/sis/datasci2017step0.php 

The deadline for applications is 22 September 2017.
 
Financial Support

There is no registration fee. Limited funds are available to support accommodation, subsistence and travel support. For financial reasons, it is likely that priority will be given to travel support for students from the Latin American and Caribbean region, except in the case of particularly exceptional students.

Applicants from any region are strongly encouraged to look for alternative sources of funding to support their participation. For the recent CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science in Trieste <link> a large number of students were able to support their participation with funding from a variety of sources including their institutions, various grants, charities and sponsoring organisations etc.

 

Target Participants

The training provided by the CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science is primarily targeted at Early Career Researchers (advanced masters students, doctoral candidates, post-docs and young or early career academics).  The data skills taught are also useful for (data) librarians and other research support staff, such as those who envisage a career as data steward or data analysts.  Furthermore, people who are more advanced in their careers who would like to improve their data skills as a form of continuing professional development are also eligible.

 

For Your Application

Applicants are expected to have a baseline of data skills and these are tested by an online form.  In addition, applicants should pay particular attention to their personal statement and communicate persuasively their reasons for wishing to attend the School: how do they intend to use these skills, how will it benefit their research or the institution in which they work?  Finally, candidates should take pains to ensure that their application is well supported by references from their past or present tutors or line managers.  This is particularly important so that the School directors have confidence in the candidate and that the skills learnt will have the maximum benefit and impact.


About the CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science

What can justly be called the ‘Data Revolution’ offers many opportunities coupled with significant challenges. High among the latter is the need to develop the necessary data professions and data skills.  Researchers and research institutions worldwide recognise the need to promote data skills and we see short courses, continuing professional development and MOOCs providing training in data science and research data management.


In sum, this is because of the realisation that contemporary research – particularly when addressing the most significant, inter-disciplinary research challenges – cannot effectively be done without a range of skills relating to data.  These skills include 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, etc, etc. The ensemble of these skills, we define as ‘Research Data Science’, that is the science of research data: how to look after and use the data that is core to your research.

The CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science has developed a short course, summer school, style curriculum that addresses these training requirements.  The course partners Software Carpentry (using the Shell command line and GitHub), Data Carpentry (using R and SQL) and the Digital Curation Centre (research data management and data management plans) and builds on materials developed by these organisations.  Also included in the programme are modules on Open Science, ethics, visualisation, machine learning (recommender systems and artificial neural networks) and research computational infrastructures.

The school has been successfully piloted at ICTP in Trieste in 2016 and 2017.  The vision of the CODATA-RDA Schools of Research Data Science is to develop into an international network which makes it easy for partner organisations and institutions to run the schools in a variety of locations.  The annual event at the ICTP in Trieste will serve as a motor for building the network and building expertise and familiarity with the initiative’s mission and objectives.  The core materials are made available for reuse and the co-chairs and Working Group team will provide guidance to assist partners in organising the school, in identifying instructors and helpers etc. The first school to expand this initiative will take place at ICTP-SAIFR (South American Institute of Fundamental Research), São Paulo, Brazil in December 2017.

Further information about the CODATA-RDA Schools of Research Data Science is available at http://www.codata.org/working-groups/research-data-science-summer-schools

Short Report on the First CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science, August 2016 https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.835565

Programme for the First CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science, ICTP, Trieste, August 2016 http://indico.ictp.it/event/7658/other-view?view=ictptimetable

Materials from the First CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science, ICTP, Trieste, August 2016 https://zenodo.org/communities/codata-rda-research-data-science-summer-school/?page=1&size=20

Programme for the Second CODATA-RDA School of Research Data Science, ICTP, Trieste, July 2017 http://indico.ictp.it/event/7974/other-view?view=ictptimetable
 
 


International Workshop on Environmental and Scientific Open Data for Sustainable Development Goals in Developing Countries - Madagascar

Madagascar generates a wealth of research data towards finding and informing sustainable solutions to environmental challenges faced nationally, but also globally. Valuable data intensive research is conducted in the areas of greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, meteorology, disaster management, food security, agriculture, oceanography, and more. The Nairobi Principles for Data Sharing agreed upon in 2014 encouraged African countries to manage and preserve their data in a trusted and digital format. It was only now (in 2017) that Madagascar – through work done by CODATA PASTD and sharing the strategic vision of the African Open Science Platform (AOSP) project – was able to take the dialogue on making national research data openly available for all to benefit, to national level. 
 
Eleven Madagascar ministers attended the High-level Meeting on Environmental and Scientific Open Data for Sustainable Development Goals in Developing Countries on 4 September 2017, which was organized by the Madagascar Program Committee. The meeting was financially supported through the African Open Science Platform (AOSP) project, and attended by the ASSAf project managers (Ina Smith & Susan Veldsman), and included a presentation by Dr Simon Hodson, Executive Director of CODATA. Following the welcome and presentation by Dr Hodson on setting the scene in terms of the sharing and alignment of data internationally, all participated in valuable dialogue on the advantages as well as concerns regarding opening up Madagascar research data funded with tax payers money. The Madagascar ministerial representatives indicated that an open data policy was indeed on the table, and that the workshop and training expected to follow, were to inform the direction forward.
 
During the Workshop on Environmental and Scientific Open Data for Sustainable Development Goals in Developing Countries (5 & 6 September 2017) the Accord on Open Data in a Big Data World was represented to the participants. An overview of open data initiatives in Africa was shared, and a presentation on the African Open Science Platform was made. During the afternoon of 5 September various initiatives were shared from the Madagascar perspective. A workshop on 6 September informed next steps to take towards a Madagascar open data policy. 
 
Visit the AOSP site for the presentations


Workshop - Managing Digital Research Objects in an Expanding Science Ecosystem

Wednesday, November 15th, 2017
9:00 am - 5:00 pm EST
National Library of Medicine
Bethesda, MD

Peter Wittenberg

Co-Editor of “Recommendations for Implementing a Virtual Layer forManagement of the Complete Life Cycle of Scientific Data” will keynote

This special one-day workshop for scientists and data and information professionals is focused on characterizing and managing digital representations of research objects (DRO) including publications, data sets, software, audio, video, and specimens in a dynamic digital science ecosystem. This workshop will explore how the challenges of characterizing DROs at scale (in volume and over time) are being met now or might be met in future cyberinfrastructure designs.


The Workshop will provide a venue for attendees to network with their peers and hear from leading experts.

Co-sponsored by

CENDI,
National Federation of Advanced Information Services (NFAIS),
Research Data Alliance/US (RDA/US)and the
National Academies Board on Research Data and Information (BRDI)

Hosted by

National Library of Medicine 

Contact Information:

Heather M. Parrish
CENDI 
Email: ​hparrish@iiaweb.com
Phone: 865-298-1245

 

Nancy Blair-DeLeon               NFAIS 
Email: nblairdeleon@nfais.org  
Phone: 443-221-2980, ext. 102

Lynn Yarmey         RDA/US
Email: yarmel@rpi.edu 
Phone: 858-722-0127

Ester Sztein
NAS
Email: esztein@nas.edu
Phone: 202-334-3049 


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