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July 2012

International Programme Office Inauguration in Tokyo

WDS opened its new office in Tokyo on 9 May at an official ceremony in the presence of the Hon. Tatsuo Kawabata, Japanese Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications, and Prof. Yuan Tseh Lee, President of the International Council for Science (ICSU). Among the dignitaries attending were the Hon. Mieko Kamimoto, Vice-Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Dr. Hideo Miyahara, President of the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT), which is hosting the new International Programme Office. Dr. Takashi Onishi, President, Science Council of Japan, and Dr. Steven Wilson, Executive Director of ICSU were also present.

New Members

Over the last months, several organizations have joined the World Data System. The WDS Scientific Committee reviewed and accredited 3 Regular Members:

1 Partner and 2 Associates were co-opted:

WDS at CODATA 2012 Conference

WDS will participate in the upcoming 23rd CODATA International Conference—Open Data and Information for a Changing Planet—in Taipei, 28-31 October 2012. Several sessions will be co-organized by WDS during the conference. A business meeting for WDS Members representatives attending the event will be convened. Please check the WDS and CODATA Conference websites for updates on the programme.

ICSU grant awarded for WDS in Africa

WDS was awarded an ICSU grant for the development of a Network Data Centre for Socio-Economic Data in Africa. The project is supported by the National Research Foundation in South Africa, ICSU Regional Office for Africa, DataFirst and the Centre for High Performance Computing, funded by Department of Science and Technology in South Africa. It is aimed at the creation of a proof of concept for a ‘Network Data Centre’. The Centre will provide standardised access to a variety of network member data collections in the field of Social, Human Activity, and Economic Sciences for Africa, and serve as a conduit between the WDS and the contributing organisations. The Centre will only be a success if the governance, policy, and procedural framework to support multi-national, multi-institutional collaboration can be determined, and the proof of concept, in addition to its technical objectives, has a major responsibility to define this framework.

Future Events

Symposium on Digital Curation in the Era of Big Data: Career Opportunities and Educational Requirements

19 July 2012, Washington DC, USA
The Board on Research Data and Information of the US National Academies is organizing this Symposium as part of a study titled “Future Career Opportunities and Educational Requirements for Digital Curation.

Data Intensive Astronomy at the International Astronomical Union General Assembly

28-31 August 2012, Beijing, China
This special session of the 28th IAU General Assembly will cover various aspects ranging from impact on science to the status of large surveys. It will also address data management, analysis and outreach activities. Francoise Genova, member of the WDS Scientific Committee will present the ICSU World Data System activities. The session is organized by Masatoshi Ohishi who was a member of the ICSU Strategic Committee on Data and Information.

GEOSS Science and Technology Stakeholders Workshop

28-31 August 2012, Bonn, Germany
The World Data System is a co-sponsor of the upcoming 2nd GEOSS Science and Technology Stakeholder Workshop: Supporting Science for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Beyond. The objective of the workshop is to review the science questions and research topics that need to be addressed in order to support progress towards the MDGs and towards meeting the grand challenges, prior and after the current target date for the MDGs, and to identify Earth observations needed to facilitate the research.

WDS Scientific Committee meeting

1-3 November 2012, Tokyo, Japan
The seventh Scientific Committee meeting of the World Data System will take place for the first time on the premises of the WDS International Programme Office hosted by Japan's National Insitute of Information and Communications Technologies (NICT) in Tokyo. This will be the first meeting of the new group appointed by the ICSU Executive board for a three years term (June 2012-June 2015).

Past Events

Rio+20: Sharing and Stewardship of Scientific Data for Improved Decision Making and Sustainable Development. Why share data fully and openly?

14 June 2012, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The Earth’s atmosphere, oceans and landscapes are changing rapidly, with human activities being a major driver. Monitoring and modelling these changes is critical to enable governments, civil society and the private sector to make informed decisions about climate, energy, food security, natural hazards, health, and other challenges. Decision-makers and managers must have access to the information they need, when they need it, and in a format, they can use. Read more on the session co-organized by WDS and CODATA for the Rio+20 Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development.

WDS tackles IPY Data Challenges

22-27 April 2012, Montreal, Canada
The WDS participated in several of the data related activities organized at the International Polar Year (IPY) 2012 Conference: From Knowledge to Action. The WDS committed to try and improve the IPY data legacy and is still working on recruiting new Members who hold IPY data. 12 WDS members hold already substantial IPY data.

Planet under Pressure: Data Challenges for Global Sustainability

27 March 2012, London, United-Kingdom
The World Data System organised a parallel session, in collaboration with CODATA, at the Planet under Pressure 2012 Conference in London on Data Challenges for Global Sustainability.  Mitigating and coping with the impacts of global change require shared access to high quality, relevant and readily understandable data and information about the Earth system. This session explored experiences in developing multi-disciplinary observation and data systems, integrated indicators for decision making, and open frameworks for data and information sharing, and will highlight the key contributions of funders and publishers. The session was chaired by Dr. Roberta Balstad and Dr. Michael Diepenbroek.