New Version of US NSF Cyberinfrastructure Plan

By Ann | February 4, 2006


Some sections of interest: p. 8: Support the development of the computing professionals, interdisciplinary teams and new organizational structures, such as virtual communities, needed to achieve the scientific breakthroughs made possible by advanced CI, paying particular attention to the opportunities to broaden the participation of underrepresented groups. NSF will continue to invest in understanding how participants in its research and education communities, as well as the scientific workforce, can use CI. For example, virtual organizations empower communities of users to interact, exchange information and access and share resources through tailored interfaces. Some of NSF’s investments will focus on appropriate mechanisms or structures for use, while others will focus on how best to train future users of CI. NSF will take advantage of the emerging communities associated with CI that provide unique and special opportunities for broadening participation in the science and engineering enterprise.

• Support state-of-the-art innovation in data management and distribution systems, including digital libraries and educational environments that are expected to contribute to many of the scientific breakthroughs of the 21st century. NSF will foster communication between forefront data management and distribution systems, digital libraries and other education environments sponsored in its various directorates. NSF will ensure that its efforts take advantage of innovation in large data management and distribution activities sponsored by other agencies and international efforts as well. These developments will play a critical role in decisions that NSF makes about long-lived data.

p.17 B. Data Collections This document adopts the definition of data collection types provided in the NSB report on Long-Lived Digital Data Collections, where data collections are characterized as being one of three functional types: • Research Collections. Authors are individual investigators and investigator teams. Research collections are usually maintained to serve immediate group participants only for the life of a project, and are typically subjected to limited processing or curation. Data may not conform to any data standards. • Resource Collections. Resource Collections are authored by a community of investigators, often within a domain of science or engineering, and are often developed with community-level standards. Budgets are often intermediate in size. Lifetime is between the mid- and long-term. • Reference Collections. Reference collections are authored by and serve large segments of the science and engineering community, and conform to robust, well-established, comprehensive standards, which often lead to a universal standard. Budgets are large and often derived from diverse sources with a view to indefinite support. Boundaries between the types are not rigid and collections originally established as research collections may evolve over time to become resource and/or reference collections. In this document, the term data collection is construed to include one or more databases and their relevant technological implementation. Data collections are managed by organizations and individuals with the necessary expertise to structure them and to support their effective use.

p. 17-19 Also contains references to ICPSR, RLG and NARA, etc. and relationship to CI.

p. 20 Principles stated

and so on….

This May at our conference we will have a number of sessions, including an opening plenary address by Dan Atkins, related to the issues raised in these and other cyberinfrastructure initiatives.

Contributed by Ann Green