RDA Plenary 6: 'Allez les filles'!
Date: Oct 22, 2015
Elizabeth Griffin participated in the Research Data Alliance 6th Plenary Meeting held in Paris. The CODATA community was very actively involved in this event with a number of joint Working Groups and Interest Groups. Elizabeth herself is actively involved as chair of the CODATA Data at Risk Task Group, and co-chair of the related RDA Interest Group on Data Rescue. On the CODATA blog, she writes:
RDA Plenary 6 took place in balmy late September in the centre of Paris, within the confines of CNAM (Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers) and just down the road from the République. Inaugurated in 1794, CNAM took over a deserted Priory and formally opened in 1802.
As well as housing a museum of innovations relevant to science and industry, it also (and primarily) serves as an adult educational centre, with emphases on practical training in science and engineering on the one hand and management and social sciences on the other. Whether it rose adequately to the challenge of a sudden influx of nearly 600 RDA delegates is more subjective.
What signs of the Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité, suggested by such proximity to the République? My French dictionary (1988 edition) offers no equivalent to `sorority’ or `sisterhood’, and a hard-hitting talk by Dame Wendy Hall to a Women-in-RDA breakfast meeting hinted that the emergence of women in both science and practical society is still Work in Progress. Women are climbing the scientific career-ladders, but not as quickly as some of the pointers anticipate. Where, then, is France?