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From Invention to Innovation in EarthCube with Examples for Disseminating Software Sharing and Science Reproducibility

TITLE: From Invention to Innovation in EarthCube with Examples for Disseminating Software Sharing and Science Reproducibility through Geoscience Papers of the Future

SESSION LEADS: Mimi Tzeng, Ji-Hyun Oh, Erin Robinson, Yolanda Gil, Sarah Ramdeen and Stephen Slota

OTHER PRESENTERS: Heath Mills, Ibrahim Demir, Suzanne Pierce, Xuan Yu

This session will discuss how EarthCube can transition technologies into science practice.

The first part of the session will present a successful example from the EarthCube GeoSoft project.  GeoSoft aims to improve software sharing in geosciences.  The importance of data sharing has become a relatively familiar concept in the past decade, with many funding agencies and a few journals now making it mandatory for scientists to document their datasets and make them publicly accessible. Software sharing, however, or the sharing of the computational methods used to process datasets and models, is still not standard practice among geoscientists.  As part of the GeoSoft project, a group of early career scientists have embarked in writing a "geoscience paper of the future" (GPF) as a mechanism to learn about best practices in software sharing.  A GPF is not only a peer-reviewed scientific paper documenting the results of primary research, it also fully documents how the data were processed, organized, and analyzed, from original collection as raw data to their final form within a paper's figures and tables, in enough detail that others can completely reproduce the science. It includes references to the full datasets, the software that were used to process the datasets, and provenance information in the form of a workflow or provenance record, all of which are made available in public repositories and have unique and persistent identifiers.  After an introduction to the GeoSoft GPF activity and how it fostered the dissemination of best practices in software sharing, six of the twelve GPF papers in progress will be presented by members of the GeoSoft Early Career Advisory Committee from a range of geoscience disciplines and backgrounds.

The second part of the session will be devoted to a general discussion on how to move from invention to innovation in EarthCube.  Invention occurs locally while innovation propagates throughout and across communities. In undertaking infrastructural work we are involved in the movement of our scientific, data and architectural inventions into 'the world' as innovations ready for uptake across disparate groups of users. Organizational, cultural, and political issues move to the forefront as various facets of wide-scale uptake, disciplinary division and data practice become the largest barriers to infrastructure adoption and use. We will focus on strategies and methods for representing and communicating the growing capabilities of EarthCube and its Building Blocks to scholars and professionals not directly or immediately involved in the project. Moving beyond product demos, how can we build excitement about EarthCube as a collaborative center and site of innovative work? In this session we will discuss the representation and demonstration of EarthCube and work towards developing communication and promotional materials with the goal of drawing new scholars and academics to EarthCube and engaging them in its ongoing planning outside of the grant-funded model. This requires a strong and consistent representation of the capabilities of the infrastructure as well as its potential in order to avoid brief engagement (“this won’t work for me”) and unwillingness to engage with the process of instituting new technology regimes. How do we identify potential technology champions and engage with them? Is there a necessary standard for representing the capability and usability of given building blocks as we begin to incorporate a central EarthCube architecture?


This session combined the following proposals:

Moving from Invention to Innovation: Representing the capability of EarthCube technologies


Geoscience Papers of the Future: The Importance of Software Sharing for Science Reproducibility

Please reference the original proposals for additional information; updates on the combined session will be posted here.