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Setting the Stage: Faculty and their Research Data

e-scienceThe UCI Libraries participated in the Association of Research Libraries/Digital Libraries Federation E-Science Institute in order to support faculty research and publishing in the growing field of e-Science and e-Research. With federal agencies' grant proposals now requiring data management plans for projects expected to generate significant digital data, we are stepping in to help researchers answer questions similar to how we already manage digital and physical collections: how will a collection be stored, how will it be archived/preserved, and what metadata is needed so that the information can be found? The Institute's goal was to help research libraries develop strategies for engaging with e-Science and e-Research on their campuses and collaboratively.

E-Science can be defined as the computationally intensive science carried out in highly distributed network environments using immense data sets that often require grid computing or High Performance Computing to process. Examples of e-Science research include data mining, data visualization, and statistical exploration of genomic and other -omic structures. E-Research can be defined as the use of information technology to support existing and new forms of scholarly research in all academic disciplines, including the humanities and social sciences.

arlOver 70 research libraries participated in the Institute from July, 2011, through January, 2012, including seven other UC libraries and libraries from institutions such as Columbia University, MIT, and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Each library had teams of three people work on projects to learn more about how faculty are engaging in e-Science and e-Research at each campus. Teams also developed an understanding of the current structure on each campus for supporting e-Science and e-Research. The Institute culminated in capstone events where participants came together to share information and strategies in order for each team to begin building a strategic agenda for their home institution. At UC Irvine, the Libraries are now in the process of developing a strategic agenda that will strengthen our collaborative efforts with other units on campus to develop services that will best meet our faculty's needs in their e-Science and e-Research initiatives.

Members of UC Irvine's team included Matthew Bietz, Assistant Project Scientist, Informatics; Julia Gelfand, Applied Sciences and Engineering Librarian; and Cynthia Johnson, Head of Reference & Acting Head, Grunigen Medical Library.

For more information, contact Cynthia Johnson, Head of Reference and Acting Head of Grunigen Medical Library (x40081 or cynthiaj@uci.edu).

 

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