Deliverable 11.1 is now available: ‘An assessment of the Ocean Data priority areas for development and implementation roadmap’

A new publication is now available from the WorldFAIR project: ‘An assessment of the Ocean Data priority areas for development and implementation roadmap’, produced by Pier Luigi Buttigieg, Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, and leader of the project’s ocean science case study work package. 

After an introduction to the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO’s Ocean Data and Information System (ODIS), the report summarises an evaluation of FAIR Implementation Profiles and FAIR Enabling Resources compiled from across WorldFAIR case studies. It then synthesises supplementary insights obtained through a survey distributed across project partners, and identifies a pathway to implement sustainable cross-domain (meta)data flows to inform and support the current development of the Cross-domain Interoperability Framework (CDIF), a major output of WorldFAIR. 

The WorldFAIR case studies on biodiversity, disaster risk reduction, chemistry, and cultural heritage were identified as focal points to bridge with ODIS, being complementary to the strategic priorities of marine science and sustainable ocean management and offering clear socio-technical interfaces compatible with ODIS’s own interoperability approaches. The high-level roadmap in this report outlines the general approach that will be pursued in the remaining tasks in the ocean science case study.  

In summary, this report draws from current data practices insight from the international, multi-domain WorldFAIR consortium to identify the most viable routes to establish and sustain cross-domain data interoperability.

The report is openly available on Zenodo.

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Expanding Ocean Interoperability – Please Complete a Short Survey (deadline 18 january)

The WorldFAIR Oceans Science Case Study is asking for your help!  

The Case Study will gather guidance from partners across the project (and any collaborators or colleagues they invite) on how its central use case – the Ocean InfoHub – can best interoperate with digital assets and key stakeholders in their domains.

Please consider completing this short survey on expanding Ocean Interoperability to your domain: (The survey will close in mid-January.)

The results will be synthesised into a publicly available Roadmap (Deliverable 11.1) for enhancing cross-domain interoperability and pre-aligning with CODATA’s emerging cross-domain interoperability framework (CDIF).

The survey aims to understand your field’s familiarity with the FAIR principles and, for example, with formatting standards and metadata.  Above all, it aims to understand how outsiders can engage with metadata and data in your domain.  It will be important to reflect on and communicate any existing or potential areas of contact between your domain and Oceans Science.  

Please forward this survey to anyone you think would have the technical awareness to complete the survey and help us improve our understanding of existing and potential cross-domain interoperability with oceans science.

On behalf of Pier Luigi Buttigieg, AWI, Ocean InfoHub and WorldFAIR Oceans Science Case Study

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Dagstuhl Workshop “Interoperability for Cross-Domain Research: Machine-Actionability & Scalability”

The “Interoperability for Cross-Domain Research: Machine-Actionability & Scalability” workshop was held at Schloss Dagstuhl from August 28 to September 2, 2022 ( The workshop was the fourth in a series, starting in 2018, exploring the role of metadata standards and the issues around interoperability in the cross-domain sharing and reuse of research data. It was jointly supported by CODATA, the DDI AllianceSchloss Dagstuhl, the Leibniz Center for Informatics, and the EU-funded WorldFAIR project, of which CODATA is the coordinator. With the current interest in the FAIR principles and their application to interdisciplinary research data, the focus of the workshop was on specific approaches which could be employed within large-scale infrastructures spanning domain boundaries.

The workshop involved 23 participants from 10 countries, and included experts from many disciplines and organisations, including infectious disease, the social, behavioural, and economic sciences, environmental science, disaster risk reduction, geographic information science, and others. The work was divided into three groups, looking at different aspects of interoperability: integration of primary and reference data; access to sensitive data; and common approaches to large-scale oceans and disaster data. Several WorldFAIR case studies contributed to these groups. A fourth group looked at how the findings in each area could be combined in a cross-domain interoperability framework, and a fifth looked at the RDF expression of some core data and metadata models. Further information on the workshop themes and the groups’ activity can be found on the workshop wiki.

The workshop was very successful in meeting its agreed goals. One was the production of an initial draft of a cross-domain interoperability framework (CDIF), which is central to the work of the WorldFAIR project and other fora looking at cross-domain interoperability. CDIF is a proposed set of recommended best practices for using a coordinated set of domain-agnostic standards – most often as specific subsets or profiles of those standards – to support a core set of functions for cross-domain FAIR reuse. The group work on specific topics has resulted in a number of planned publications, and one or more collaborative projects between some of the participating institutions. 

The workshop showed that Schloss Dagstuhl’s reputation as a venue for intensive collaborative work is well-deserved. Over the course of this series of workshops, solutions to the problem of cross-domain interoperability have gained a sharper focus, leading to the concrete outputs which will serve as a basis for ongoing work. A fifth workshop in the series, ‘Defining a core metadata framework for cross-domain data sharing and reuse’, is planned for the fall of 2023, as well as a workshop on the application of DDI’s Cross-Domain Integration standard.  

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Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI)

As the Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research, the Alfred Wegener Institute works primarily in the cold and temperate regions of the world. Together with numerous national and international partners, we are involved in decoding the complex processes in “System Earth”. Our planet is in the midst of profound climate change. The polar regions and seas are changing. At the same time, they play a central role in the global climate system. How is planet earth evolving? Are we observing short-term fluctuations or long-term trends? Polar and marine research has always been a fascinating scientific challenge. Today it is also a piece of future research.