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Science Support: The Building Blocks of Active Data Curation

Guillory, Anabelle (2013) Science Support: The Building Blocks of Active Data Curation. In: AGU (American Geophysical Union) Fall Meeting, 9-13 December 2013, San Francisco, CA, USA.

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Abstract

While the scientific method is built on reproducibility and transparency, and results are published in peer reviewed literature, we have come to the digital age of very large datasets (now of the order of petabytes and soon exabytes) which cannot be published in the traditional way. To preserve reproducibility and transparency, active curation is necessary to keep and protect the information in the long term, and “science support” activities provide the building blocks for active data curation. With the explosive growth of data in all fields in recent years, there is a pressing urge for data centres to now provide adequate services to ensure long-term preservation and digital curation of project data outputs, however complex those may be. Science support provides advice and support to science projects on data and information management, from file formats through to general data management awareness. Another purpose of science support is to raise awareness in the science community of data and metadata standards and best practice, engendering a culture where data outputs are seen as valued assets. At the heart of Science support is the Data Management Plan (DMP) which sets out a coherent approach to data issues pertaining to the data generating project. It provides an agreed record of the data management needs and issues within the project. The DMP is agreed upon with project investigators to ensure that a high quality documented data archive is created. It includes conditions of use and deposit to clearly express the ownership, responsibilities and rights associated with the data. Project specific needs are also identified for data processing, visualization tools and data sharing services. As part of the National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) and National Centre for Earth Observation (NCEO), the Centre for Environmental Data Archival (CEDA) fulfills this science support role of facilitating atmospheric and Earth observation data generating projects to ensure successful management of the data and accompanying information for reuse and repurpose. Specific examples at CEDA include science support provided to FAAM (Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements) aircraft campaigns and large-scale modelling projects such as UPSCALE, the largest ever PRACE (Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe) computational project, dependent on CEDA to provide the high-performance storage, transfer capability and data analysis environment on the “super-data-cluster” JASMIN. The impact of science support on scientific research is conspicuous: better documented datasets with an increasing collection of metadata associated to the archived data, ease of data sharing with the use of standards in formats and metadata and data citation. These establish a high-quality of data management ensuring long-term preservation and enabling re-use by peer scientists which ultimately leads to faster paced progress in science.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Subjects: Data and Information
Atmospheric Sciences
Depositing User: Anabelle Guillory
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2013 09:09
Last Modified: 21 Apr 2017 11:03
URI: http://cedadocs.ceda.ac.uk/id/eprint/967

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