Across the country and around the world, communities of researchers are voluntarily sharing data across disciplinary and institutional borders. Understanding the motivations, practices, and challenges faced by members of these communities is important to the National Science Foundation (NSF) and other funders seeking to promote and normalize data sharing and reuse. However, questions remain about how to best support data communities as they emerge and mature. Some of the most urgent issues involve documentation, metadata, managing heterogeneous data formats, handling privacy and IP issues, and building community engagement. Information professionals have expertise in many of these issues, suggesting the potential for fruitful collaboration with researchers.

This spring, Ithaka S+R, in partnership with the Data Curation Network, will bring together a cohort of researchers and informational professionals for a two-day incubation workshop to explore and advance voluntary data sharing in STEM fields. “Leveraging Data Communities to Advance Open Science” will convene in Ann Arbor, Michigan on February 28 and March 1, 2022. 

We are pleased to announce that the following data communities and information professionals will participate in the workshop:

Phosphorus Sustainability

To advance phosphorus sustainability through materials informatics and development of a repository with data types and scales ranging from atomic particles to earth systems. 

Team leader: Stevan Earl, Arizona State University
Information Professional: Sarah Wright, Cornell University

Materials Commons

To encourage researchers to submit contextual information to an existing repository to make their data more useful and trustworthy.

Team leader: John Allison, University of Michigan
Information Professional: Fernando Rios, University of Arizona

Natural History Data

To protect intellectual property rights and improve provenance metadata of 3D data derived from natural history specimens.

Team leader: Adam Rountrey, University of Michigan Museum of Paleontology
Information Professional: Xuying Xin, Penn State University

Radiopharmaceutical Therapy Data

To share dosimetry data with interested researchers with proper IRB permissions so that others can use their dosimetry data to validate their research methods.

Team leader: Yuni Dewarajara, University of Michigan
Information Professional: Amy Nurnberger, MIT

Maple River Dam Removal Project

To create a complete snapshot of the Maple River’s abiotic and biotic make up prior to dam removal, a project requiring complex metadata templates to harmonize heterogeneous data collected from multiple sites and researchers.

Team leader: Jason Tallant, University of Michigan Biological Station
Information Professional: Amanda Rinehart, Ohio State University

Montana CREWS Project

To create platforms and metadata that facilitate sharing environmental data with the general public and tribal communities in the interest of information justice.

Team leader: Venice Bayrd, Montana State University
Information Professional: Jordan Wrigley, University of Colorado

Association of Religion Data Archives

To increase discoverability and usage of an established repository of over 1,000 datasets of religious data.

Team leader: Roger Finke, Penn State University
Information Professional: Renata Curty, University of California, Santa Barbara

Play and Learning Across a Year Project

To index over 1000 hours of video data to make it fully searchable, and create scalable metadata and data schemas.

Team leader: Rick Gilmore, Penn State University
Information Professional: Wind Cowles, Princeton University

Polar Geospatial Center

To improve data quality, accuracy, and traceability and manage data use restrictions for geospatial data. 

Team leader: Claire Porter, University of Minnesota
Information Professional: Reina Chano Murray, Johns Hopkins University

SNMMI AI Task Force

To navigate HIPAA, privacy, and intellectual property issues that create barriers to machine learning to advance nuclear medicine and molecular imaging.

Team leader: Arman Rhamim, University of British Columbia
Information Professional: Helenmary Sheridan, University of Pittsburgh

Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis

To explore technological and policy issues associated with collecting, storing, and sharing sensitive and proprietary internet traffic data.

Team Leader: Elena Yulaeva, CAIDA
Information Professional: Seth Erickson, Penn State University

Center for Health Equity Research/Duke Clinical Research Institute

To expand the impact of COVID-19 diagnostic data through the evolution of a data hub into a data community capable of supporting science and community members well into the future.

Team leader: Karla Garcia-Rascon, University of North Carolina
Information Professional: Jen Darragh, Duke University


To develop IsoBank into a multidisciplinary repository for isotope data, with an emphasis on metadata generation and community engagement.

Team leader: Anna Dabrowski, University of Texas
Information Professional: Brian Westra, University of Iowa

American Society of Agronomy

To consider the role of scholarly societies in encouraging authors to publish data and advancing their understanding of how to initiate robust processes for publication of FAIR data in their flagship journal.

Team leader: Sylvie Brouder, Purdue University
Team leader: Jeff Volenec, Purdue University
Information Professional: Leslie Delserone, University of Nebraska


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No.2103433.