20210309 Scientific Board Meeting Minutes

Present: George Alter, Ingo Barkow, Darren Bell, Bill Block, Jane Fry, Arofan Gregory, Simon Hodson, Sanda Ionescu, Jared Lyle, Hilde Orten, Barry Radler, Flavio Rizzolo, Carsten Thiel, Wendy Thomas, Joachim Wackerow

Agenda topics:


Ingo welcomed everybody, and specifically the Vice-Chair of the Executive Board, and the Chairs of the Working Groups, that were invited to present their work and plans for the near and the medium term to the members of the Scientific Board.

2. Presentations by Executive Board and Working Group Chairs

The Working Groups that presented at the meeting were:

  • Executive Board - Bill Block

  • Training Group - Jane Fry

  • Marketing Group - Barry Radler

  • MRT - Arofan Gregory

  • SDTL - George Alter

  • TC - Wendy Thomas

  • Controlled Vocabularies Group - Sanda Ionescu

Please find the presentations and documents provided by the Working Groups at the Wiki, under ‘Input documents’ > ‘Documents to address’.

3. Questions and answers

The questions and comments that were raised by members of the Scientific Board were related to Controlled Vocabularies. Topics were:

  • The CESSDA CV Manager used for the DDI CVs have URI resolution issues.

  • Would it make sense to apply the 10 Simple Rules guidelines for making CVs FAIR, to the DDI CVs?

  • Can the DDI CVs /CESSDA CVs be used as a case study in the IUSSP-CODATA WG on applying the 10 Simple Rules to vocabularies?

  • Is it possible to use the CESSDA CV Manager tool for CV development?

  • Are there plans for publishing SKOS instead of Genericode at the DDI website? The published CVs should be transformed to SKOS?

Due to time constraints of the question and answer session the Scientific Board members were encouraged to send further questions regarding the presentations held, to Ingo and Hilde for follow-up by email.

4. Internal discussion among Scientific Board members regarding the follow-up of the input from the Working Groups

After the questions session, the Working group Chairs were thanked for their contributions and left the meeting.

The following topics regarding follow-up were discussed among the Scientific Board members:

  • Follow-up work on input from the working groups: At the meeting it was agreed that each member of the Scientific Board provides a first description of priorities, based on the input of the Working Groups, as well as from plans of the former Scientific Board. The input from each member could form basis for the first outline of the Scientific Plan. The documents to be addressed are available at the Wiki, under ‘Input documents’ > ‘Documents to address’.

  • Ingo and Hilde will get back to the members with a description about the ‘homework’ by email in terms of structure of the document to be provided, length of time period for the Scientific Workplan, steps to produce the workplan, as suggested by Simon.

  •  Forming of new working groups under the Scientific Board: Ingo proposed a three steps process for approving new working groups under the Scientific Board:

  1. Application to the Scientific Board by email, by an individual or a group that wish to form or become an official DDI Alliance Working Group.

  2. Clarify the situation in relation to existing groups and ongoing work, as well as to rules for forming official working groups (to be formed/revised?).

  3. Approval or not of the application by the Scientific Board.

This approach was agreed at the meeting. It was also agreed that Ingo invites existing and active groups that are not officially approved, to apply for an official Working Group status to be evaluated at the next meeting of the Scientific Board.

5. Any other business

  • Repurposing of training related funding: A proposal from the Training Opportunities Sub-Group to repurpose $8400 USD of the $15000 USD of the FY21 budget allocated to the Scientific Board for training tutorials purposes, into preparation of training material relevant for their upcoming webinar series, was presented by Hilde at the meeting.

The proposal regards to enhance the Training Materials work in the immediate term to cover topics which are not currently high priority within the Training Group, but which will be of immediate use to the Training Webinar series currently under planning by the Training Opportunities group. These would involve development and/or finalization of slide decks and other training materials on a fast-track basis, working directly with the Slide Deck Review sub-group to ensure rapid finalization of the decks.

The timeline for this work would be to have materials completed by the end of May 2021, with a goal of delivering Webinars with them according to the proposed schedule (one every 4 to 6 weeks).This program will begin in April of 2021, and will continue through early 2022. Proposed topics for the immediate term include:

-DDI and the FAIR Ecosystem: Covering alignment with GO FAIR and FAIRsFAIR initiatives such as FAIR Implementation Profiles (FIPs), FAIR Digital Objects (FDOs), FAIR Data Points (FDPs), etc. (This would be a new topic.)

-DDI-CDI Implementations: Covering anticipated and ongoing implementations of the DDI-CDI model in various projects, including the recommendations currently being made for EOSC. (This would be a new topic.)

-Metadata Basics: This material exists in an unfinished form under review and would be finalized. 

-Metadata and Data Quality: This material exists in a draft form, but will need enhancement to cover the quality perspectives of the research community (as opposed to the Quality Frameworks in the official statistics world currently addressed).

The proposal from the Training Opportunities Sub-Group was approved by vote by the Scientific Board.

  • DDI URN namespace: Achim is working on this. The goal is to achieve a formally approved URN namespace for the DDI in the official IANA registry of URN namespaces.

Achim has provided a related document for discussion. This is accompanied by a technical document, for information. Both documents are also available from the Wiki, under ‘Input documents’ > ‘Documents to address’.

 It was agreed to put the discussion of this on the agenda for one of the two first meetings of the Scientific Board.

  • Date of the next meeting of the Scientific Board: As we went overtime by half an hour, it was suggested that the meeting time would be extended from one and a half to two hours, if possible. As two of the members would not be available for the meeting date set up for next time, Ingo agreed to try to arrange a new timing for that with Jared.

Not discussed:

  • Internal operational procedures.  From the DDI Bylaws: "The Scientific Board should maintain a document outlining its internal operational procedures entitled “Scientific Board Operational Guidelines”."

  • Appointing Advisory Members.  From the DDI Bylaws: "The Scientific Board may appoint up to two external Advisory Members, without internal vote."