Since the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May, race and racism have been in the headlines around the globe. The Black Lives Matter movement may have been born out of a uniquely American situation but the wrongs against which it protests exist in other parts of the world. If we learn nothing else from the current global focus on racism and its historical precedents, we learn that taking comfort in being ‘not racist’ is insufficient, bordering on complacent.
Welcome to volume 44 of the IASSIST Quarterly. Here in 2020 we start with a double issue on reproducibility (IQ 44(1-2)). The start of 2020 was in the sign of Corona. Though we are now only in the middle of the year, we can say with confidence that 2020 will be known for the closing down of nearly all public life. From our very own world this included the move of the IASSIST 2020 conference to 2021.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been nearly a year since I took the reins of the presidency from the wonderful Tuomas Alaterä. This week should have been my turn to miss lunch to lead the annual meeting at the conference. The 90 minute event is arguably the least exciting thing about the weeklong get together which is why we generally bribe people with lunch to attend. While it may not be an electrifying event, it provides an important forum for our community and allows the leadership to share important information about the activities of the organization that may or may not be readily apparent to the members at large.
It’s alive! As you have probably noticed by now - IASSIST’s new website has been launched. This is the fourth IASSIST website if one does not count the separate membership site iassistdata.info. Before taking a closer look at the new site, let’s take a quick look back at IASSIST’s website history. IASSIST first ventured into the World Wide Web during the membership year 1994-1995. But prior to this there had already been IASSIST Gopher!
IASSIST’s Africa Regional Secretary Ms. Winny Nekesa Akullo and Prof. Constant Obura-Okello report on a data workshop at Makerere University, Kampala. If you’re looking to orginise a similar regional or national data event, the IASSIST 2020 Event Sponsorship Proposals call is open until 26 January 2020. IASSIST’s Membership Committee’s event sponsorship program recently sponsored a one day workshop on Integrating Data Literacy into Library and Information Science (LIS) Curriculum. The workshop aimed at bringing academicians in the field of library and information science to discuss how data literacy can be integrated in the LIS curriculum so as to have trained library professionals who are able to provide data literacy skills to their patrons.
Welcome to the fourth issue of volume 43 of the IASSIST Quarterly (IQ 43:4, 2019). The first article is authored by Jessica Mozersky, Heidi Walsh, Meredith Parsons, Tristan McIntosh, Kari Baldwin, and James M. DuBois – all located at the Bioethics Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri in USA. They ask the question “Are we ready to share qualitative research data?”, with the subtitle “Knowledge and preparedness among qualitative researchers, IRB Members, and data repository curators.
Report from "Workshop on Data Literacy for Researchers in Social Sciences, Administrators and Policy-Makers", Chandigarh, India.
Data Literacy is a skill needed for researchers and social scientists in the digital age to get the most out of massive data available to us in the digital era today. This was highlighted by Prof. I.V. Malhan, Former Dean, Academics of Central University of Himachal Pradesh, Dharamshala while inaugurating a ‘Workshop on Data Literacy for Researchers in Social Sciences, Administrators and Policy-Makers’ held at MG State Institute of Public Administration, Punjab (MGSIPA) at Chandigarh (India).
On Saturday, April 27, 2019, IASSIST and the broader data professional’s community lost a valued colleague and friend, Darrell Donakowski. The IASSIST organization mourns his untimely death and wishes to recognize the significant contributions he made to the data community over the course of his career. Darrell Donakowski. Photo from ICPSR. Friends and family have created a scholarship at the University of Michigan-Dearborn in his memory. At the suggestion of the several members and with the approval of the Administrative Committee, IASSIST has contributed $1000 to the scholarship to recognize the numerous contributions Darrell made to the data community right up to the time of his premature passing.
Welcome to the third issue of volume 43 of the IASSIST Quarterly (IQ 43:3, 2019). Yes, we are open! Open data is good. Just a click away. Downloadable 24/7 for everybody. An open government would make the decisionmakers' data open to the public and the opposition. As an example, communal data on bicycle paths could be open, so more navigation apps would flourish and embed the information in maps, which could suggest more safe bicycle routes.
Welcome to the second issue of volume 43 of the IASSIST Quarterly (IQ 43:2, 2019). With joy and pride the many people behind each issue of the IQ are here presenting a special issue. IASSIST has several interest groups of members committed to selected important areas under the umbrella of IASSIST. Be aware that you could become a member of an interest group (see: Committees and groups). If an interest area that you find important is not presently on this list, you are invited to start campaigning for the formation of a new interest group.