[ESIP-all] Call for papers - SciDataCon, Botswana, 5-8 November 2018

Alex de Sherbinin adesherbinin at ciesin.columbia.edu
Wed Mar 14 17:46:14 EDT 2018

This is a call for papers for three sessions at SciDataCon (Scientific Data
Conference), which will take place 5-8 November in Gaborone, Botswana, as
part of the ICSU-RDA International Data Week
<http://www.internationaldataweek.org/>. The deadline for submissions is *April
30*. Please submit at: https://www.scidatacon.org/IDW2018/submit/
 The sessions are on:

·         Africa Data Centers: Challenges and Opportunities

·         Spatial Data for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in

·         Citizen Science Data – from Collection to Curation to Management

 Please see the descriptions below.

*Africa Data Centers: Challenges and Opportunities*

African researchers and development institutions generate large volumes of
data, but the region has lagged in the provision of data through
repositories. The World Data System (WDS) is organizing this session to
share lessons learned from data repositories in the region, and to identify
practical strategies to overcome challenges and take advantage of new
opportunities that will result in a greater number of trustworthy digital
repositories. This session will explore a number of well-known challenges –
including insufficient funding, the need for supportive policies and
licenses, human resource constraints, and poor internet and computer
infrastructure – but with a solutions-oriented approach. The session will
also explore opportunities such as advances in cloud storage and computing
at reasonable cost, which means that data centers no longer need to operate
their own servers and security infrastructure. Papers are encouraged that
present the experience of data center managers, as are papers by scholars
and practitioners working in the development of regional capacities to
sustainably archive and disseminate data.

This session is sponsored by the ICSU World Data System.

*Spatial Data for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Africa*

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the 17 associated Sustainable
Development Goals (SDGs), and the far larger number of indicators to
monitor each SDG have created a tremendous demand for high spatial and
temporal resolution data. This is in line with the United Nations General
Assembly Report of the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals
(A/68/970 12 August 2014), which states that “In order to monitor the
implementation of the SDGs, it will be important to improve the
availability of and access to data and statistics disaggregated by income,
gender, age, race, ethnicity, migratory status, disability, geographic
location and other characteristics relevant in national contexts to support
the monitoring of the implementation of the SDGs”.

National statistical offices (NSOs), census bureaus, and space agencies
have been working diligently to identify the data needs and to demonstrate
the potential for traditional statistical data, in combination with newer
remote sensing, crowd sourced, mobile, and other “big data”, to track
progress. As a continent, Africa has the potential to leapfrog other
regions by applying novel data development methods and data streams to
solve its development challenges.

This session invites papers that illustrate the potential for spatial data
to assist with SDG monitoring and to identify people groups or geographic
areas that are in under-served (as part of the Leave No One Behind agenda).
Presentations describing new data development strategies and worked
examples of SDG indicator monitoring platforms incorporating spatial data
are welcome, together with broader examples of the application of spatial
data to development challenges. Examples of data or services that are
developed in collaboration with end-users, as well as approaches to open
data, and presentations by researchers and practitioners from Africa, are
especially encouraged.

This session is co-sponsored by the ICSU World Data System, the Global
Partnership for Sustainable Development Data, and CIESIN at Columbia

* Citizen Science Data – from Collection to Curation to Management *

The goal of this session is to discuss the ecosystem of data-generating
citizen science and crowdsourcing (“CS”) projects so as to characterize the
potential and challenges of these developments to impact science as a
whole, and data science in particular. Varying standards for collecting and
documenting CS data can cause potentially valuable sources of information
to be overlooked for scientific analysis. CS data has the potential to
contribute to an improved understanding of people and the environment,
however, challenges still need to be addressed in this data revolution,
mostly because of wrong perceptions of data users regarding its appropriate
evaluation and handling.

Properly maintained and evaluated CS projects already provide consistently
reliable data for common use and scientific studies in many fields,
although there is still some resistance to their use. Communicating to
scientists who have difficulties in understanding alternative QA/QC methods
is a major challenge that needs to be addressed. Improved management and
resourcing of CS initiatives will assist in handling large data,
simplifying access, intentionally gathering data to answer specific
questions, and gaining value from raw data. Good data management practices
can also effectively communicate data quality.

The session will explore issues surrounding common methods and approaches
for ensuring and evaluating data quality, including validating various
streams of citizen science data; mechanisms for cleaning and curating the
data; and, systems in place for the long-term management and dissemination
of those data. Important topics of discussion also include how projects in
different disciplines, geographies, and spatial or temporal scales handle
data practices, and concepts such as fitness for use.  We welcome general
submissions describing the activities of CS programs and projects in Africa
and around the world, as well as papers by academics or scientists
exploring data-related issues in CS.

This session is sponsored by the The CODATA-WDS task group on citizen
science data.

Alex de Sherbinin, PhD
Associate Director, Science Applications Division
Deputy Manager, NASA SEDAC
CIESIN, The Earth Institute at Columbia University
P.O. Box 1000 (61 Route 9W), Palisades, NY 10964
Web: www.ciesin.columbia.edu and http://sedac.ciesin.columbia.edu
Tel. +1-845-365-8936,  Skype: alex.desherbinin
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