New Legal Mandate in Hand, Data-Sharing Advocates Tackle Cultural Obstacles - Government - The Chronicle of Higher Education
peter.suber's bookmarks 2013-03-23
"More than 200 representatives of universities, companies, and government agencies gathered in Göteborg for the first general session of the Research Data Alliance. Orchestrated by the American, European, and Australian governments, the alliance is an attempt to help researchers band together with companies and public agencies to cut through data-sharing bottlenecks....Groups such as the Research Data Alliance can help remove technical barriers to sharing the vast amounts of data that are increasingly essential to 21st-century science, said Gary King, a professor of government at Harvard University who heads one such effort. But by far the bigger remaining obstacles are political and cultural, said Mr. King, director of the Institute for Quantitative Social Science at Harvard and principal investigator in the Dataverse Network, an open-source software application for managing research data....The alliance also hopes to help extend that culture beyond federally sponsored research to include privately held data, Ms. Berman said. Marketing businesses and companies such as Google have vast amounts of data that could be immensely useful to researchers if the parties could negotiate understandings not just on rights payments but on privacy and competitive issues, she said. Google, Microsoft, and other companies are already working with the alliance, in part because they are essential to helping researchers manage and store the volume of data being generated in many academic fields, she said...."