SDSC Team Awarded Funding for NSF GO FAIR Symposium

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Christine Kirkpatrick (Left) and Melissa Cragin (Right)

Aug. 10, 2021 — The San Diego Supercomputer Center’s (SDSC) Research Data Services (RDS) Chief Strategist Melissa Cragin and Division Director Christine Kirkpatrick were recently awarded a grant by the National Science Foundation to fund a GO FAIR symposium in the next several months.

The production of Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR) data and other digital objects has become a powerful notion throughout the research world, aimed at increasing successful data integration and allowing for seamless service provision across multiple resources and organizations. Cragin and Kirkpatrick serve as leaders for UC San Diego’s FAIR data efforts via the U.S. GO FAIR Office, led out of SDSC. Their new award supports work on an early 2022 symposium that will gather input from the broader scientific community on building U.S. capacity for understanding and implementing the FAIR principles for research digital objects.

“FAIR focuses attention on the need to more closely align research data management (RDM) practices with the end goal of machine actionable data, code, workflows, AI models and other digital objects,” said Kirkpatrick, who serves as co-principal investigator on the grant. “Our division at SDSC exists to thoughtfully embed RDM into research computing platforms and services. We seek to foster the community discussions needed nationally to identify gaps, models to follow, and to inform our own local service development.”

The team has created a plan to gather a diverse group of experts and representative stakeholders from data and research communities, U.S. funders and mission agencies, and science societies to seek input on the most promising areas and pathways for expanding uptake, integration and implementation of the FAIR principles in research practice and services.

“We will seek diverse participants who are outside the well-known public voices on research data management systems and services, while also including leaders who are working at the intersections of data infrastructure development, domain sciences and open science,” said Cragin, who is the principal investigator on the grant. “International partners engaged in related initiatives will also be assembled for perspectives and experiences that will inform U.S. efforts in support of more highly interactive sessions.”

Cragin said that the symposium, planned for early 2022, will also focus on the wide range of opportunities in the U.S. for expanding an expert data workforce, supporting AI initiatives and institutional work on public access to federally funded research, and fostering markets for new technologies and implementation services.

More information about the GO FAIR Symposium will be available soon.