Joint meeting: IG Data Rescue, IG Data Fabric, IG Preservation e-Infrastructure, IG Domain Repositories, IG Libraries for Research Data


Date & time: Wednesday 2nd March - 11:00 - 12:30 - Working Meeting Session 4
Meeting title: Rescuing, Re-Using and Sharing Data At Risk

The CODATA/RDA RG/IG for "Data At RIsk/Data Rescue" is concerned with the imperilled situation which faces many of science's irreplaceable historical data (observations, measurements and records). Most date back to pre-digital days and are still in analogue forms only, making them inaccessible to modern research despite their unquestioned value. Some are in primitive digital forms and lack basic information like format structure or metadata. Data that are unused are vulnerable to deterioration and loss, or to being discarded as "unwanted", to the intense detriment of science. The TG/IG investigates, counsels and supports efforts to recover those endangered historical data. By linking with other RDA IGs which have overlapping interests (such as "Libraries for Research Data", "Domain Repositories", "Data Fabric", "e-Preservation", etc.), the attempts to rescue the information in those older data is able to gain momentum and to move towards the overarching goal of making all of them fully accessible for re-use and free sharing as interpreted by the ethic of Open Science.

1. To share Case Studies in which historic data were successfully rescued, digitized, and incorporated into modern research, illustrating the differences that they made to the scientific outcome.

2. To discuss parallel situations in the social sciences.

3. To debate ways and means of integrating Rescue efforts (including funding) so that the activity becomes recognized as an essential facet of investigations in both the natural and social sciences.

4. To consider an Agenda for the international TDA Workshop on "The Rescue of Data At Risk" (Boulder, Colorado, September 8-10 2016)

1. Introduction and Outline by IG "Data Rescue" co-Chair
2. Notice of upcoming events in Data Rescue:
(a) International RDA Workshop on "The Rescue of Data At Risk", Boulder (CO), Sept 8-10, 2016
(b) 3rd international Elsevier Award for "Data Rescue" in the Geosciences (late 2016)
(c) Book on "Data Rescue"
(d) Suggestions for other ways of raising the profile for the rescue of Data At Risk?
3. Case Studies of successful (and problematic) data-recovery projects, illustrating the scientific benefits but highlighting too the challenges encountered. One from "Domain Repositories" has already been promised.
4. General discussion about ways to integrate these efforts so that the recovery of historic data be widely recognized and supported in all sciences and other affected disciplines.

In principle all members of the RDA who sincerely embrace the RDA ethic of "Research Data Sharing without barriers" will interpret "barriers" to be those between digital and non-digital, as well as those created artificially by the policies of nations, organizations and individuals. All are welcome, since the successful recovery of our fragile heritage is of concern to all the RDA. Obviously, members of the IGs which are formally supporting the Session will be strongly encouraged to attend; looking at matters of Data Rescue from different perspectives and different domains will enable the main IG to define a more comprehensive programme for the future.
Groups jointly meeting
IG Data Rescue
IG Data Fabric
IG Preservation e-Infrastructure
IG Domain Repositories
IG Libraries for Research Data
Contact person 
Elizabeth Griffin