IDCC14 Preview: Trisha Cruse

16 October, 2013
Carly Strasser

As part of the buildup for the #IDCC14 conference in San Francisco, the planning committee is interviewing a few key players working in the field data curation. This week I sat down with Trisha Cruse, director of the University of California Curation Center at the California Digital Library (CDL), and asked her a few questions about the conference. The CDL is co-organizing this year’s IDCC, alongside the DCC and the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI).

For attendees from outside of the US, what has been happening around data and digital scholarship that might influence conversations at the IDCC14 conference?

Like many other countries, the US such a hotbed of activity right now in terms of data sharing. First, the Obama Administration has made efforts to acknowledge the importance of open data in society via funding initiatives and the Office of Science and Technology Policy Memorandum on Open Data, released in February. This memo requires that products from federally funded research be publicly available, and that funders have a plan in place to make sure this happens.

Of course, the funding agencies themselves play an important role in this. The National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health have been requiring data management plans alongside proposals, and we are seeing these plans evolve to have more teeth as the community buys into the open culture.

The US is also participating in an international initiative, the Research Data Alliance. This group is bringing together important stakeholders from the community to ensure standards and practices are universal to ensure data is open and usable.

Closer to home, the University of California Faculty recently passed an Open Access Initiative, which calls for all scholarly publications by UC Faculty to be made freely and openly available. This type of initiative can really pave the way for open data and data sharing.

Why did CDL decide to partner with DCC and CNI as an organiser?

I love sharing the Bay Area's many virtues with colleagues in the digital curation space, so when the idea of a US-based meeting was pitched, I jumped at the chance to promote a San Francisco Meeting. The Bay Area is this unique microcosm where a lot of things are coming together around open data and data sharing. There are world-class research institutions, private sector companies working on big data, and a very engaged and active citizenry. There is a unique opportunity to be in this microcosm for IDCC.

IDCC is such a wonderful meeting, and the talks are always outstanding. I always look forward to meeting new colleagues and catching up with old ones. DCC and CNI are great organizations and the vanguards in furthering the cause of data sharing.

Anything in particular you are looking forward to for the meeting?

The speaker roster looks great – it speaks to the overarching theme of this year's IDCC, which is “Data driven transformations in research, education, business, and society”. I'm really glad to see Fran Berman as a keynote since she's been a great role model for many up-and-coming technology professionals. I'm also excited to hear Atul Butte speak about transferring lessons he learned in the private sector to his current work in pediatric endocrinology at Stanford.

What do you hope conference attendees will take away from this particular conference in San Francisco?

Our proximity to Silicon Valley and leaders in science and technology as well as world class academic institutions provide a unique opportunity for attendees to interact with all of the stakeholders in the digital curation space.

Any advice for visitors?

San Francisco is a walking city. Be sure to bring comfortable shoes so you can take in the sights on foot! Don't be afraid to duck into hole-in-the-wall bars and restaurants – they are among the best treasures of the city.