FAIR Island Project Receives NSF Funding

The California Digital Library (CDL), University of California Gump South Pacific Research Station, Berkeley Institute for Data Science (BIDS), Metadata Game Changers LLC, and DataCite are pleased to announce that they have been awarded a 2- year NSF EAGER grant entitled “The FAIR Island Project for Place-based Open Science” (full proposal text). 

The FAIR Island project examines the impact of implementing optimal research data management policies and requirements, affording us the unique opportunity to look at the outcomes of strong data policies at a working field station. Building on the Island Digital Ecosystem Avatars (IDEA) Consortium (see Davies et al. 2016), the FAIR Island Project leverages collaboration between the Gump Station on the island of Moorea in French Polynesia (host of the NSF Moorea Coral Reef Long-Term Ecological Research site), and Tetiaroa Society, which operates a newly established field station located on the atoll of Tetiaroa a short distance from Moorea. 

The FAIR Island project builds interoperability between pieces of critical research infrastructure — DMPs, research practice, PIDs, data policy, and publications contributing to the advancement and adoption of Open Science.  In the global context, there are ongoing efforts to make science Open and FAIR to bring more rigor to the research process, in turn increasing the reproducibility and reusability of scientific results.  DataCite as a global partner in the project, has been working to recognize the importance of better management of research entities. This has led to critical advances concerning the development of infrastructure for Open Science. Increased availability of the different research outputs of a project (datasets, pre-registrations, software, protocols, etc.) would enable the reuse of research to aggregate findings across studies to evaluate discoveries in the field and ultimately assess and accelerate progress.

Key outcomes the FAIR Island team will develop include: 

  1. CDL, BIDS, and the University of California Natural Reserve System will work together to build an integrated system for linking research data to their associated publications via PIDs. We will develop a provenance dashboard from field to publication, documenting all research data and research outcomes derived from that data. 
  2. The project also facilitates further development of the DataCite Commons interface and extends connections made possible via the networked DMP that allows users to track relationships between DMPs, investigators, outputs, organizations, research methods, and protocols; and display citations throughout the research lifecycle.
  3. Developing an optimal data policy for place-based research by CDL, BIDS, and Metadata Game Changers is the cornerstone component of the FAIR Island project.  A reusable place-based data policy template will be shared and implemented amongst participating UC-managed field stations and marine labs. In addition, we will be incorporating these policies into a templated data management plan within the DMPTool application and sharing it with the broader community via our website, whitepapers, and conferences such as the Research Data Alliance (RDA) Plenaries.

The FAIR Island project is in a unique position to demonstrate how we can advance open science by creating optimal FAIR data policies governing all research conducted at field stations. Starting with the field station on Tetiaroa, the project team plans to demonstrate how FAIR data practices can make the reuse of data and the collaboration of data more efficient. Data Management Plans (DMPs) in this “FAIR data utopia” will be utilized as key documents for tracking provenance, attribution, compliance, deposit, and publication of all research data collected on the island by implementing mandatory registration requirements, including extensive use of controlled vocabularies, personal identifiers (PIDs), and other identifiers.

The project will make significant contributions to international Open Science standards and collaborate with open infrastructure providers to provide a scalable implementation of best practices across services. In addition, DataCite seeks to extend the infrastructure services developed in the project to their member community across 48 countries and 2,500 repositories globally. 

We will continue to share details and feature developments related to the FAIR Island project via our blog. You can join the conversation at the next RDA plenary in November 2021. Feedback or questions are most welcome and can be sent directly toinfo@fairisland.org

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