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Tuesday, October 29 • 2:00pm - 3:50pm
Pa 22 - A Joint Heritage: ...

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A Joint Heritage: Where Science and Culture Meet
Elizabeth Griffin

The Natural Sciences and the Arts are often perceived as two contrasting strands of the human environment: the factual versus the fanciful, the technological versus the intangible. However, in the realm of historic scientific observations, the two disciplines share more than is usually credited. Historic observations constitute an invaluable resource for understanding the natural world, but their management requires not only scientific acumen but also considerable assistance from archivists, librarians, the general public and even the media.

Historic data are fundamental for measuring change. Most changes - in the atmosphere, the land and the oceans, and in what lives and grows there - are gradual, so data that span many decades are required to inform models adequately. But though the world is rich in such historic data, is it poor in its ability to access them. Researchers need their data in digital form, but most historic data are non-digital so they are effectively unuseable, and it is our basic scientific knowledge which suffers. Born-digital data are at most only 20-30 years old; without access to older data, forecasts of change must involve some guesswork, and we cannot afford to guess when so much is at stake. Historic data are also virgin sources for cultural research: how observations were made and stored, by whom, their context, precision, and technical limitations.

 We are conducting a Panel Discussion on this topic, organized and introduced by the CODATA Task Group, "Data At Risk" (which also has UNESCO's support). It will address cultural challenges in engaging help from the public, and include up to 5 10-minute contributions describing European-based programmes to recover and digitize non-digital data. It will conclude with a general discussion of ways to expand the schemes, emphasising both efficiency and breadth of impact.



Elizabeth Griffin

National Research Council of Canada
Dr. R. Elizabeth Griffin is a volunteer researcher at the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory in Victoria, BC.  She obtained her PhD at Cambridge (UK), and has pursued projects in stellar astrophysics at Cambridge, Oxford, Brussels, Toulouse, Boulder, Toronto and (now) Victoria... Read More →


James Brusuelas

CHERCHEUR, University of Oxford
Researcher in Digital Philology and Classics for the  University of Oxford.  His research is focused on Greek Literature, Papyrology, Ancient Comedy and Digital Humanities.  As a founding member of the “Ancient Lives” project, which crowd-sources the transcription of ancient... Read More →

Marilyn Deegan

King's College London
Professor of Digital Humanities at King's College London and the former editor of LLC: the Journal of Digital Humanities. She has 25 years' experience in digital humanities and is also a medievalist.  Her recent publications include Text Editing, Print and the Digital World (edited... Read More →

Agnes Kirchhoff

BGBM Freie Universitaet Berlin
Scientific Assistant at the Botanic Garden and Botanical Museum in Berlin-Dahlem, in the field of biodiversity informatics.   Recent projects relevant for this discussion include the reBiND project (http://rebind.bgbm.org) to rescue legacy databases.  An information specialist, Ms. Kirchhoff has expertise in Cybertaxonomy, database creation for the living collection of the Berlin Botanic Garden, Biological and landscape-planning surveys, and vegetation for 3D visualization projects.  A recent paper of particular connection with t... Read More →

Thierry Pauwels

Astronomical Observatory, Koninklijke Sterrenwacht van Belgie
Dr. Thierry Pauwels is chief of the section “Astrometry of Solar System bodies” at the Royal Observatory of Belgium.  At present his main activities are in the context of the Data Processing and Analysis Consortium of ESA's satellite Gaia, where he is leader of the unit which... Read More →

Davenport Robertson

AUTRE, University of North Carolina, School of Information & Librar
W. Davenport (Dav) Robertson is Professor of the Practice at the School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. There, in the Metadata Research Center, he is a participant in DARI, the Data-At-Risk Initiative, a project of the CODATA Task... Read More →
avatar for Carmen Skarlupka

Carmen Skarlupka

Director, International Environmental Data Rescue Organization
Advocacy and stewardship of our natural hydrology resources, specifically watershed and aquifer security and surety. Implementation and utilization of Citizen Science, crowdsourcing, projects that educate and engage people in volunteering their time in the collection of hydrologic... Read More →

Tuesday October 29, 2013 2:00pm - 3:50pm CET
 Fort Saint-Jean - Room F

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