New Approaches to Technology Development: How ESIP and USGS are working towards comprehensive Earth data provenance
The Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) is a non-profit, volunteer, and community-driven organization that advances the use of Earth science data. ESIP is funded by NASA, NOAA and USGS and supported by 120+ member organizations. Within ESIP, the ESIP Lab is a space where the Earth science community can receive financial or logistical support to work towards solutions to technology challenges. Recently the ESIP Lab partnered with the USGS on the “Community-based cyber infrastructure research and development assistance” award. The primary goal of the award was for USGS to leverage the collective knowledge of the ESIP community to move efforts around data provenance forward. However, second to that goal was the experiment on how to achieve it. In this case the ESIP Lab facilitated the Community PROV Challenge - a novel approach centered around idea gathering, technology incubation, and synthesis working groups. This presentation will show how the unique power and flexibility of the ESIP community has enabled the USGS to engage multiple partners from across the spectrum of Earth system science—government, academia, commercial and non-profit—around Earth data provenance. The Community PROV Challenge provided insights into emerging methodologies and technologies to manage information flows from multiple sources simultaneously and through time. Under a paradigm where Earth science researchers combine data from multiple agencies into new syntheses that answer questions, and drive further inquiry, far beyond what any one agency could pursue on their own, novel approaches to technology development and community input will be critical.