Paper No. 11
Presentation Time: 4:10 PM


WILLIAMS, John W., Department of Geography, University of Wisconsin Madison, 550 N Park Street, Madison, WI 53706, LEHNERT, Kerstin A., Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, 61 Route 9W, Palisades, NY 10964, ANDERSON, David M., Paleoclimate Branch, NOAA's National Climatic Data Center, Boulder, CO 80305, FILS, Douglas, Consortium for Ocean Leadership, 1201 New York Ave, NW, 4th Floor, Washington, DC 20005, JENKINS, Chris, Instaar, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309, LENHARDT, W. Christopher, RENCI, 100 Europa Drive Suite 540, Chapel Hill, NC 27517, NOREN, Anders, LacCore, University of Minnesota, 500 Pillsbury Dr SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455, OLSZEWSKI, Thomas D., Department of Geology and Geophysics, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3115 and UHEN, Mark, Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Earth Sciences, George Mason University, Washington, DC 22030,

Understanding the evolution of the Earth-Life System requires networks of paleobiological and paleoenvironmental data and the integration of these data with earth system models. However, the paleogeosciences are a long-tail discipline, in which most data are generated by individual scientists and small research teams. This creates challenges of data heterogeneity, semantic heterogeneity, legacy data and dark data, and dispersal of cyberinfrastructure resources across many locations and software platforms. These informatics challenges are general to the geosciences, and potentially soluble given the on-going revolution in the computer sciences. In response, NSF has launched the EarthCube initiative, designed to build a community-supported architecture for sharing, discovery, and integrated analysis of data and models across the geosciences.

For EarthCube to succeed, cyberinfrastructure development must be community-driven, flexible, integrative, and inclusive: it must be rooted in existing community resources and practices. In response to this need, we are launching the Cyberinfrastructure for Paleobiosciences (C4P), a Research Coordination Network with the goals of 1) discovering, cataloging, and providing a clearinghouse of existing resources; 2) identifying best practices and standards, particularly with respect to geochronological and paleobiological data; 3) identifying barriers to data integration; and 4) stimulating communication and collaboration among geoscientists and computer scientists. Planned activities include a webinar series describing current advances in geoinformatics to be launched in Fall 2013, town halls and workshops, and a new catalog that will identify existing database resources, software tools, data standards, and best practices, which will be integrated with other EarthCube inventories. All activities are intended to maximize engagement within and across disciplines, e.g. paleobiologists, bioinformaticists, stratigraphers, geochronologists, geographers, data scientists, and computer scientists. Ultimately, by dissolving existing barriers among these disciplines, the goal is to improve the application of modern data management, data mining, and computational methods to the unified study of the Earth-Life System.