The Helmholtz Earth and Environment Data Hub – connecting people and integrating data infrastructures for Earth System Sciences
The research field Earth and Environment (E&E) of the German Helmholtz Association, which consists of seven Helmholtz centres, has launched a Data Hub initiative. The Data Hub integrates the diverse data repositories and data management infrastructures along with their cross-sectional fields in an open, networked infrastructure. All E&E centres are working together towards a joint, yet distributed infrastructure, organised in three sub-hubs (ATMO, MARE, TERRA), to connect the E&E centres and their stakeholders even better. Structured and harmonised interfaces will enable communication with national and international initiatives. Flexible thematic viewers allow for domain specific perspectives on data. Thus, demonstrating the realised synergistic potential of the connected infrastructures. The central aims of the E&E data hub are to provide a FAIR-ready infrastructure and the establishment of a common approach to data management in the research field E&E, based on synergies between the involved centres. The data hub approach will contribute to the German national research data infrastructure for Earth System Sciences (NFDI4Earth) and will foster international connectivity and establish the positioning of the research area in discussions on the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC). For the upcoming years, development is focused on citable data publication (DOI), digitial sample management (e.g., International Geo Sample Number IGSN), interoperable sensor metadata for consistent management of sensors and sensor data (see for example sensor.awi.de), providing metadata for data in interoperable form, and communication and knowledge-exchange between centres, sub-hubs, and the people, who are shaping the initiative. As part of the working process in the sub-hubs, and for strengthening the horizontal communication on the operational level, HUB-encompassing cross-cutting working groups have been established. These groups are targeting issues of relevance for all sub-hubs, as there are: profiles of metadata standards (in conjunction with the Helmholtz Metadata Collaboration, HMC); viewer technologies; PIDs, data publication, and samples; sensor management and metadata workflows; distributed data analysis of raster data and remote sensing data. Their common objectives are the enforcement of FAIR principles in the centres by mutual agreement, the consolidation and further development of a distributed IT architecture and infrastructure (data portal) and the identification and development of collaborative software solutions regarding the visualisation of data for data analysis.
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The E&E DataHub initiative implements cross institutional and cross domain data management via a distributed infrastructure. Problems that have to be addressed are not only of relevance to Earth System Science, but include addressing domain independent aspects. The E&E DataHub initiative is very interested in exchanging knowledge and experiences with other RDA communities in different formats.
Related IGs: ESIP/RDA Earth, Space, and Environmental Sciences IG; RDA/CODATA Materials Data, Infrastructure & Interoperability IG, Metadata; Data Discovery Paradigms; Vocabulary Services
Related WGs: e.g. Data Citation, Data Versioning, FAIR Data Maturity Model, FAIRSharing Registry: connecting data policies, standards & databases, Research Data Collections