[CODATA-international] Arctic ? Re: October 2019: Publications in the Data Science Journal

Clark, Timothy (twc8q) twclark at virginia.edu
Mon Nov 4 07:48:48 EST 2019

Hi George,

Regarding FAIR and restrictions on openness for human subjects protection - Barend Mons et al. wrote an article in 2017 that attempted to formally delineate these levels.

  *   Mons, B., et al. 2017. Cloudy, increasingly FAIR; revisiting the FAIR Data guiding principles for the European Open Science Cloud. Information services and use 37(1):49-56. https://doi.org/10.3233/ISU-170824

In this work, “FAIR Level D” describes publication with robust archiving, and open metadata, but conditional access to full content under various restrictions.  As you say, this is important in biomedical and social research.

As a broad topic in data science, various forms of exploiting human subjects data and violating privacy and other rights for profit or political advantage, and methods to prevent that from happening, bring up as many or more critical ethical and social issues as openness itself.

Tim  Clark

Timothy W. Clark, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Public Health Sciences and Data Science
Associate Professor of Neurology (by courtesy)
University of Virginia
560 Ray C Hunt Drive, Charlottesville VA 22903

On Nov 3, 2019, at 6:37 PM, George Alter <altergc at umich.edu<mailto:altergc at umich.edu>> wrote:

Hi Mercury and Mark,

It should be noted that NSF Arctic is not the only US funding agency with an effective policy on data sharing.  The National Institute of Justice withholds a portion of the grant until data have been archived.  (See https://nij.ojp.gov/funding/submitting-data-under-data-resources-program)   NIJ has been doing this for about 10 years, and as Mercury expects, holding back some money is a very good way of getting compliance.  NIJ currently requires data to be sent to an archive that they fund at ICPSR, and we inform NIJ to release the money when the data have arrived.

I also want to remind everyone that "open data" can be a misleading term in this context.  Some of the data archived by NIJ grantees cannot be "open" in the sense that it is available for download on the Internet.  Since the data often includes sensitive information, such as criminal histories, ICPSR allows access to those data under conditions designed to protect confidential information.  ICPSR and other data archives have developed a variety of ways to provide secure access to confidential data.

This is very important, because protection of research subjects is often used as an excuse for not sharing data.  If these discussions only use the term "open data", we will keep repeating debates about sensitive data that have already been settled.  FAIR is a much better rubric than "open", but it would be good to have a term that implies equality of access even when the data must be used in a protected environment.

George Alter
Research Professor, ICPSR
Professor of History, University of Michigan
PO Box 1248, Ann Arbor, MI 48106-1248
Tel: 734-478-0783    Fax: 734-647-8200
Email: altergc at umich.edu<mailto:altergc at umich.edu>

On Sat, Nov 2, 2019 at 11:40 PM Ross Wilkinson <ross.wilkinson at gmail.com<mailto:ross.wilkinson at gmail.com>> wrote:
Hi All, In support of Mark,

To get the change we all seek, come up with a policy that has broad support and apply it, as the Polar Data Centre has done, provide infrastructure and agreements as in Codata and RDA and WDS efforts, and find good practice, and promote it, as Australia did with a Festival of Open data.

Policy. practice and infrastructure are all needed, and together to obtain the very big change in practice that is needed.

We found that the key was to “get on with it”, rather than seeking perfect practice, perfect metadata, perfect compliance. In fact perfect gets in the way of rapid change.

M: +61 419 53 41 63

On 2 Nov 2019, at 4:44 am, Parsons, Mark <parsom3 at rpi.edu<mailto:parsom3 at rpi.edu>> wrote:

Falk, I can’t find all your data for you. Nor can I make sure they are in formats you like. All I can say is that my experience as a member of the NSF Arctic Data Center Advisory Committee indicates that the NSF Arctic program has had a very solid and enforced data policy for the last several years.

Does it cover all US-funded Arctic data? No. It doesn’t even cover past NSF data. Are there exceptions? Yes. Do some investigators manage to weasel around the policy? Of course. Nonetheless, I think it is a model for the rest of NSF if not the rest of the US government. The policy is largely what we called for in IPY and it should be promoted not denigrated. Regardless, screeds on the CODATA list are unlikely to improve it or other program or agency policies.


On 1 Nov 2019, at 11:21, Falk Huettmann <fhuettmann at alaska.edu<mailto:fhuettmann at alaska.edu>> wrote:

Hi there, Mark et al.,

100% no!

So for the Arctic records then, U.S.,

where are -ONLINE OPEN ACCESS - the ARCTIC U.S. polar bear GPS and telemetry tracking data, same for arctic fox,
and where are the bowhead whale data, killer whale data, all the seal data, and the survey and trawling
data by U.S. vessels, with NOAA/NMFS directly involved  and during IPY?
People want to see and use them; that includes students

And where are the ARCTIC USDA data on Avian Influenza, and the FIA Forest plot
data for Alaska, all with GPS and geo-referencing  and metadata?

Where are the Arctic Bird Banding data, Golden Eagles included, Open Access online ?
Bering Sea salmon and seabird survey data; 30 years of records there; where are they and who can use them,
apart of a few agencies and their contractors ?

Please provide exact details then for people to use those data.

Again, Mark, that's FOR THE ARCTIC, U.S., with federal as well NSF and NIH involvement,
including permits of land-use, animal care and  vets approval.

And the devil here often sits in the detail instead and data are not really useable (even when a URL exists),
that is, meaningful GPS coordinates and taxonomy, and usable data formats, nor somebody available to talk to.
NetCDF is 100% NOT IT, that is for many  of the NOAA and NMFS climate data, as an example.
IPCC are the others (ARCTIC) and so are the data related to Prudhoe Bay, or Barrow, Arctic Drilling,
and the Bering Sea, all part of the ARCTIC U.S. you refer to.

Here a good one, as one example of many for you to solve:
How to get and use those data, with metadata, why not in GBIF, OBIS, hardly Movebank for public download, e.g. in R ?

Please provide details  on those to us please Mark, all as you stated and worked on for years, Arctic + IPY and beyond all with your direct involvement .
What's the track record here ?.

In 'the U.S. Arctic' there are now also Japanese, Koreans, Indians and Chinese working, apart of Russia as the main player, for over 50 years.
WHERE ARE THESE DATA, and why not pushed more, mandatory (as we all agree on) ?

So instead of making such bold and well-sounding claims, I propose Mark, you can first ask people who actually know and work with, and use and need such data
for decades for a simple reality check and advise, and to actually progress.
We have enough empty promises indeed. I see them almost daily but I ask for data open access online instead.

Re. journal data submissions received: does that not speak volumes by itself, e.g. objectives of such a science and rewards, or who really cares ?

Thanks again; kindly from 'the Arctic'
    Falk Huettmann PhD, Professor
        Uni of Alaska Fairbanks

PS Instead of claimed progress on Open Access, I propose we can have a publication and journal where the failures of NOT Open Access data sharing are outlined and discussed.
It's gigantic and on the rise: Arctic, Antarctic, Asia and Africa etc etc

On Fri, Nov 1, 2019 at 8:44 AM Parsons, Mark <parsom3 at rpi.edu<mailto:parsom3 at rpi.edu>> wrote:

On 1 Nov 2019, at 10:04, Mercury Fox <ceds at email.arizona.edu<mailto:ceds at email.arizona.edu>> wrote:

they could change the norm overnight by simply tying the policy
to the award and requiring open data as a deliverable.

For the record, the NSF Arctic Program does just that, and they follow up and do QC, AND they fund an archive to make it possible.



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