It is undeniable that data underpins modern society. Data is everywhere, and is constantly being generated and consumed in increasing quantities. However, in order to exploit the data to its fullest extent, not only does it need to be managed correctly, it needs to be easily accessed and distributed without barriers. Yet still there are problems within the data community, especially with the infrastructure over which data is shared.
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For the past years, Research Data Alliance (RDA) has been kindly welcoming early career researchers and fellows to Plenary Meetings held twice a year in different locations around the World. This year (2017) I was among the lucky people that were awarded a scholarship in order to attend the 9th Plenary Meeting in Barcelona, between 5-7 of April.
Data, Research, interesting people, and Barcelona. Four ingredients that have made my first participation at the RDA plenary an extremely enjoyable experience.
My work is in digital collaborative learning, and I am very interested in how standards for educational data are developing. I was hoping to find discussions about this at the RDA Plenary, but there were no specific sections on educational data. It is possible that the field is too young, and needs more time to come to an internal understanding, before we begin the process of formalizing standards and protocols.
I am a post-doc researching collaborative learning at EPFL in Switzerland. I have long been interested in Open Access and innovations in how scientists communicate, because I believe that the goal of our work should be to advance science and be able to build upon each others' work. Initially, most of my work was around activism for Open Access publishing, like choosing OA journals, or self-archiving pre/post-prints for the many journals that allow that. Later, I became interested in the publishing formats in themselves (PDF is not ideal), standards for metadata, etc.