2016 GBIF Ebbe Nielsen Challenge now open, seeking innovations for data gaps and biases

Date: Jul 29, 2016

The 2016 GBIF Ebbe Nielsen Challenge, which will focus on on understanding, examining
and addressing gaps and biases in open-access biodiversity data from the GBIF network, is officially open for submissions.

Individuals and teams now have two months to develop innovative submissions and vie for more than €30,000 in prizes from this incentive competition. Closing date for submissions is 29 September 2016. GBIF will announce first- and second-prize winners—who will receive €20,000 and €5,000, respectively—at its annual Governing Board meeting in Brasília on 26 October 2016.

Targeting geographic, taxonomic, temporal, enviro\nmental and other gaps and biases in the available data is one of five priorities outlined in the GBIF 2017-2021 strategic plan, so any entry has the potential to help improve data 'fitness for use' in scientific research and policy. The emphasis on gaps and biases also builds on a growing body of scientific research that explores the topic.

General Assembly Announcement 2016

Date: Jul 27, 2016

The 2016 CODATA General Assembly will be held on Sunday, 11 September 2016 at 
the Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel in Denver, Colorado. This year, the General Assembly precedes International Data week and which includes our conference SciDataCon 2016.

Programme and Draft Agenda

An outline agenda indicating topics to be covered and activities 


CODATA Members (National Members, International Scientific Unions, Supporting Organisations and Affiliate Members) should send a delegate and may also send observers.  CODATA Task Groups and Working Groups may also send observers.

To register as a delegate to the 2016 CODATA General Assembly go to

Location: Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel, Address: 1550 Court Place, Denver, Colorado. 

Phone: +1-303-893-3333

Google Maps:

International Interdisciplinary Conference on Digital Cultural Heritage August 30 – September 1, 2017

Date: Jul 19, 2016

Location: Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin

The conference is open for contributions that cover technical challenges as well as strategic

Key messages relating to the impact of new technologies and processes on cultural heritage are especially welcome.

Our special aims:

  • raise awareness in Society, Science, and Technology fields about importance of the cultural dimensions and the growing potential of Digital Cultural Heritage
  • promote innovative content analysis from cross-organizational interoperability of digital humanities databases and XML methods, techniques, and approaches
  • indicate on the central role of spatial concepts enabling synergy for knowledge generation from massive granular digital cultural heritage content
  • create innovative cross-disciplines / cross sectors partnerships facilitate intercultural and interdisciplinary dialogue
  • elaborate roles and interest of information society

According to the CODATA principles of the broadest interdisciplinary discourse in the domain of Data for Science and Technology, contributions are expected from different fields of the science communities to exchange best practices and initiate recommendations for future research and development

DCH2017 is organized by CODATA-Germany (The German National Committee to the ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology).in cooperation with partner organizations

Submit abstract until March 27, 2017 using the EasyChair system

For all questions and suggestions please contact DCH2017 Conference Organizer at

Open Access Pledge

Date: Jul 18, 2016

Clinicians, policy makers, decision makers, practitioners and many researchers in low-income countries still have limited access to key research findings, due to journal paywalls. The Global Young Academy has just launched the More Open Access pledge to push for faster change.
Pledging means commitment to submitting at least 1 manuscript to an Open Access outlet (peer-reviewed journal or pre-print server) by the end of the year. The initiators have aimed for a pledge that is feasible for many, irrespective of discipline, seniority, or resources. They want to generate more consideration of Open Access and, most of all, more action. 

CODATA is partnering with the GYA in a number of activities and supports this pledge.  You can read more and sign up via

Daisy Selematsela, NRF and longstanding member of CODATA TG awarded Knowledge Management Leadership Award 2016

Date: Jul 13, 2016

Daisy Selematsela of the National Research Foundation, South Africa and a long-standing member of the CODATA PASTD Task Group has been nominated and awarded the Knowledge Management Leadership Award 2016 by the World Education Congress & Global Knowledge Management Congress and Awards held in Mumbai (INDIA) on the 23 June 2016. Daisy was one of the eight global recipients.
The Global Knowledge Management Congress in association with the World Education Congress is governed by Global Advisory Council which conferred eight Knowledge Management Leadership Awards to peers from Canada, USA, Singapore, Malaysia, India and South Africa. The aim of the awards is to recognize the Best of the Best, organized for a professional cause. The criteria is for those who can make a difference to the lives of others are chosen. For the quality of their work rural reach and outlook and ability to contribute value of social change. Daisy Selematsela  was one of the recipients of the 2016 Knowledge Management Leadership Award. The event was held on 23 – 24 June 2016 at the Taj Lands End, MUMBAI.

Call for CODATA Task Group Proposals, 2016: deadline 25 July - UPDATE

Date: Jul 8, 2016

In response to many requests, CODATA has agreed to extend the deadline for Task Group proposals.  Proposals for Task Groups should be sent to on the form included in that document no later than COB on Monday 25 July 2016.  This is an absolutely final deadline.  

The attached document provides detail of the required scope of such Task Groups as well as an indication of some priority areas.

The call is open to new Task Groups or to existing Task Groups to renew their activities.

Task Groups are an important means through which CODATA delivers on its mission and Strategic Plan.  It is imperative that Task Groups should have clearly defined outputs that contribute to one or more of the strategic priorities that are laid out in that plan.

The three priority areas in the CODATA Strategy are as follows:

  1. To promote Open Data principles, policies and practices;
  2. To advance the frontiers of data science and its adaptation to scientific research;
  3. To build capacity for  improving skills and the functioning of science systems (particularly in low and middle income countries - LMICs)

The call suggests some high priority topics under each of these headings (see the call document for further details): 

Open data principles, policies and practices

  • developing good practice and recommendations around data principles and policies;
  • examining the limits of openness;
  • synthesizing and advancing work on the benefits of data sharing;
  • exploring the theme of data diplomacy to consider what international agreements can promote the more open availability of data.

Frontiers of Data Science

  • Reproducibility in research
  • Statistical, epistemological and ethical challenges of Big Data
  • Criteria for selection and preservation of research data
  • Development of glossaries, data dictionaries or ontologies
  • Data integration and data strategies for international, transdisciplinary research programmes

Capacity building, data skills and education

  • analyzing requirements for data education
  • developing and refining the curriculum for ‘research data science’;
  • examining and articulating the processes and standards for the creation of reusable online materials and the development of those materials;
  • examining and addressing issues around access to research software, the maintenance and development of Open Source research software.

Task Group proposals addressing these or similar issues are particularly encouraged.  This does not mean that Task Group proposals addressing areas not described below will be considered out of scope: we invite and encourage innovative ideas from the CODATA community.

Data Citation Workshop: Developing Policy And Practice - UPDATE

Date: Jul 1, 2016

CODATA is pleased to announce further information relating to the US Data Citation Workshop: Developing Policy and Practice,Tuesday 12 July 2016.

Keynote: The workshop will include a keynote from Marcia McNutt, President of the US National Academies of Science. 

Workshop Programme: the final workshop programme is now available

Register here very few places remain, a wait list has been put in place.

Follow Online: 
For those unable to attend in person it will be possible to follow the event online at

CODATA/ICSTI Task Group on Data Citation and hosted by The National Research 
Council's Board on Research Data and Information

Workshop for data professionals focused on increasing awareness and encouraging policy and practice in support of data citation.

Hear perspectives on the value, use, and challenges of data citation from vario

us stakeholders, including:

  • Publishers
  • Editors
  • Data Managers
  • Federal Agencies, and 
  • Authors

Date: Tuesday, July 12, 2016 (8:00 am – 5:30 pm EST)

Venue: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering & Medicine, Keck Center, 500 Fifth St., NW, Room 100, Washington DC

“Open Data and African Research” Special Issue - Call for Papers

Date: Jul 1, 2016


Louise Bezuidenhout (University of Witwatersrand and Notre Dame); Louise.M.Bezuidenhout.1[at]
Sabina Leonelli (University of Exeter); S.Leonelli[at]
Brian Rappert (University of Exeter); B.Rappert[at]

Background: This Special Issue aims to explore how, why, and to what end scientists in developing countries, and particularly those in sub-Sahara Africa, share and re-use data, and whether these activities differ from the priorities, practices, and policies associated with research in other conditions. We seek to attract papers that capture the challenges of conducting research in low-resourced environments and the innovative ways in which scientists overcome these challenges and produce/disseminate/use data (whether in digital or other formats).  We would be happy to discuss possible contributions with prospective authors over email.

Abstract submissions should be sent to the Editors via

Venue: The Data Science Journal is produced by CODATA (the Committee on Data for Science and Technology), an interdisciplinary Scientific Committee of the International Council for Science overseeing data handling and data-intensive research across disciplines and countries around the world.  The Data Science Journal has a range of submission types, including standard articles (up to 8,000 words).  See for more details. Data Science Journal speaks to a range of audiences, including researchers across the physical, life and social sciences, and provides inexpensive Open Access publication options.

Provisional Timetable:

Invitation of Submission of Abstract (500 words): 1 September 2016
Deadline for Submissions: 20 December 2016
Reviewers’ Feedback to Authors: 30 March 2017
Deadline for Submission of Revised Papers: 15 May 2017
Potential Publication: July/August 2017

Confirmed Contributors:

Michelle Willmers (UCT)
Louise Bezuidenhout (Exeter)
Sabina Leonelli (Exeter)
Brian Rappert (Exeter)


Uniform Description System Version 2.0 Now Available

Date: Jun 30, 2016

A complete revised version of the Uniform Description System for Materials on the Nanoscale (UDS) is now available for download. Version 2.0 of the UDS is the result of two years of work and meetings by the CODATA-VAMAS Working Group on Nanomaterials that extensively updated and extended Version 1.0. The UDS 2.0 contains 19 tables of detailed descriptors and their definitions that are directly applicable for reporting nanomaterials research results, identifying nanomaterials in regulations and standards, developing formats for nanoinformatics resources, specifying nanomaterials in commercial transactions, and other uses. Comments and suggestions are welcomed. Please send to

Reviews and comments requested on Draft White Paper: 'Gap Analysis on Open Data Interconnectivity for Global Disaster Risk Research'

Date: Jun 17, 2016

The CODATA Task Group on Linked Open Data for Global Disaster Risk Research invites external review and comment on a draft White Paper which presents a 'Gap Analysis on Open Data Interconnectivity for Global Disaster Risk Research’.
Comments are invited by 30 September 2016.  Comments may be sent to the Task Group coordinators:
Please consult both the summary document and the white paper itself.
From the Introduction to the White Paper:
Gaps in data infrastructure, data sharing policies and data use governance must be addressed to unleash the potential of disaster research in helping regions, especially the developing countries, to improve risk assessment, reduction and mitigation. Two related areas are being studied: open data , and data interconnectivity . The data­driven nature of disaster research demands open access to scientific data, as it is impossible to fully understand the cause and impact of a disaster event without consulting multiple types of data. In addition to open data, disaster researchers face perhaps a greater challenge –to find relevant data sets in a “sea” of distributed and disparate data resources. The next generation data infrastructure must provide linkage of data, helping researchers to find relevant data across distributed data holdings.
As stated in the Sendai Framework, disaster risk reduction requires a multidisciplinary approach and decision­making based on the open exchange and dissemination of disaggregated data. It is urgent to enhance the scientific and technical work on disaster risk reduction and its mobilization through the coordination of existing networks and scientific research institutions at all levels and in all regions. In answering this call to the science community, it is of utmost importance to promote and practice the collection, management, opening up and sharing of scientific data related to disaster risk research, as well as the employment of relevant technologies and applications, consistently and globally. This white paper, supported by ICSU and CODATA communities, aims at systematically analyzing the needs for the data infrastructure proposed in the Sendai Framework and providing the conceptual building blocks to help realize the Sendai imperative.

Our vision for the next generation disaster risk research data infrastructure is an interconnected, collective repository of observational and derived disaster­related data that is open, discoverable, and easily accessible and usable by all, enabled by the revolutionary digital technologies today and open access policy embraced by users and providers.
This paper aims at identifying the gaps in technology and relevant policies that prevent effective interconnection of disaster related data and information for use in research, education and public engagement. It examines the current state of information technology for data management and sharing, as well as policies regarding data availability at various levels, and discusses potential solutions and examples toward open data and data interconnectivity for disaster research.

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