A community of researchers to learn how critical DOE Environmental System Science (ESS) data is managed, stored, discovered
Berkeley, CA, May 11, 2021 – The Environmental System Science Data Infrastructure for a Virtual Ecosystem (ESS-DIVE) repository of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DoE) Earth and environmental science data hosted its first hands-on workshop dedicated to Environmental System Science (ESS) data and fostering a community around the same. The workshop, hosted online by the ESS-DIVE team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), took place Monday and Tuesday, May 24-25 from 9am-2pm PST (12pm-5 pm EST) and is free for all registrants.
The workshop was designed both to introduce newcomers to ESS-DIVE and to help those familiar with ESS-DIVE to sharpen their data practices. It included discussions of ESS-DIVE’s present and future; instruction on querying, submitting, and describing ESS data; and hands-on tutorials for those both new and experienced with the repository. It was a valuable opportunity for personnel associated with projects funded by the DoE’s ESS program to learn how to archive data in ESS-DIVE and for ESS-DIVE to work with the community to make the process as easy as possible.
Environmental data, and the models and software that depend on it, have helped us gain an exponentially better understanding of the natural world in recent years. We are in the midst of a cultural and paradigm shift where open-access data increasingly provides the foundation on which scientific progress is built. In light of global challenges, such as climate change, it is more important than ever to have open and reliable data to make scientific breakthroughs and sound decisions. However, historically data has not been well documented, managed, stored, and reused. As such, ESS-DIVE is working with a community of DoE ESS-funded researchers to improve the long-term efficiency of data management and to maximize the value of ESS data.
At the same time, the complexity, diversity, and sheer volume of data in the ESS-DIVE repository will also grow, from terabytes of data just a few years ago to petabytes in the future. That volume places extra demands on the investigators who contribute data generated by DoE-funded projects. It also makes it more difficult for students, teachers, decision makers, and interested members of the public to discover and use critical publicly-funded data.
Many ESS projects are uniquely collaborative and interdisciplinary. They involve specialists and data across a range of environmental disciplines, including hydrology, ecology, climate, geology, geophysics, geochemistry, and microbiology. A key challenge of ESS-DIVE is serving such diverse and multidisciplinary data that is often connected by a given research question or location. Many types of data are required to address critical questions such as how ecosystems process carbon or how contaminants cycle through soil and water. ESS-DIVE will discuss use cases during the workshop to ensure that our reporting formats and tools support the researchers’ science goals.
To LBNL Senior Scientist and Data Science and Technology Department Head Deb Agarwal, who is the lead Principal Investigator of ESS-DIVE, the workshop represents a chance to broaden participation in an important collective endeavor.
“Data is a valuable research output in and of itself. ESS-DIVE was established to acknowledge the importance of sound environmental research data archiving and to make that data widely and readily available to anyone interested in using it.
The Community Data Workshop is an important opportunity for the ESS-DIVE team to introduce the repository to the community and to discuss upcoming features in development. There are many ESS project teams that are new to the repository and this workshop will help them get a head start on the process of effectively managing and archiving data.
We are really excited to bring together new and already engaged users to discuss how we can work together to archive their ESS data. We look forward to working together to make sure that ESS-DIVE is serving the needs of the ESS community.”
ESS-DIVE is funded by the Data Management program within the Earth and Environmental Systems Science Division under the DOE’s Office of Science Biological and Environmental Research program and is maintained by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Registration for the ESS-DIVE Community Data Workshop is now open. To learn more about the workshop, or about ESS-DIVE in general, please visit the workshop event page or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.