SIS 495/2011:Topics

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University of Tennessee School of Information Sciences 495/2011

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Contents

Nature of Science and Research

  • Researcher: Miriam
  • Discuss scientific inquiry and the scientific process; philosophical basis of
  • Discuss the general process and nature of scientific data.
  • Environmental Psychology Reference
  • Environmental scientists
  • Historical overview of Environmental Science (in North America) Reference

Nature of Information Science & Core Information Science Concepts

  • Researcher: Lisa
  • Define the core information science concepts for the class
  • Information behavior - seeking, collecting, etc.

Scientists and Information

  • Researcher: Todd
  • relationship of scientific process and research to information and information science
  • emergence of the data intensive research paradigm
  • DataOne scientists baseline assessment
  • merging blend of natural science and information science professionals (e.g. need to manage, archive, find data, etc.)
  • Biodiversity information needs

Data collection and the data lifecycle

  • Generation and diversity of environmental information
    • where does it come from? (observation of the natural world) How is it created? Role of the observer.
  • Types of data- soil, water, air, species counts, etc
  • Ways data can be collected (automated data collection, manual collection...citizens vs. scientists, advocates vs. objective observers)
  • Data reporting units (mg/kg, ppm, ug/l...)
  • Organizing environmental data
  • Managing environmental data
  • Interpreting environmental data
  • Raw data vs. summarized data vs. interpreted data vs. modeled data
  • QA/QC
  • Data Quality Objectives
  • finding environmental information / where is environmental information found?
    • major government databases
    • census data
  • NSF Grant Guidelines on Data Management
  • Information policies

The Environmental Data/Information Lifecycle

A possible organizing scheme for some of these topics may be the Geospatial Data Lifecycle proposed by the Federal Geographic Data Committee. There are seven stages:

Define

What is environmental information?

Inventory/Evaluate

  • Where is the data? Who owns it? Who provides it?
  • Data ownership, legal questions, copyright
  • Managing or dealing with metadata

Obtain

  • Purchase
  • share or exchange data
  • modify legacy data
  • create new data.
  • Exchanging and collaborating (information, data)
  • Selecting reliable science data

Access

  • Where will the data/information be published? How do we disseminate the data?
  • Discuss pros and cons of open source and open data sharing

Maintain

Concerns about funding, personnel, infrastructure needs.

Use/Evaluate

User studies and evaluations. Have we met our goals?

Archive

How do we keep data for the long term after it is no longer being actively used?

Metadata

  • Researcher: Priyanki
  • Preparing data sets to model environmental processes
  • How environmental data/observations go from environmental data object to metadata
  • Environmental metadata

Technology and Tools or Tool Finding Issues

  • Information Systems and the Environment Reference
  • Database design & use for science/environmental data
  • Spreadsheets for modeling and problem solving
  • Environmental information management systems

Environmental Decision Making

  • Map data life cycle model to environmental decision making model and highlight role of data at different points of decisions
  • Environmental decision-making
    • who makes environmental decisions
    • role of the public in environmental decision making and interpretation of environmental information
  • Tragedy of the Commons Reference
  • Sampling bias
  • interpretive bias
  • Evaluation of environmental data

Science Communication

  • Communicating environmental data
  • Presenting environmental data
  • politics of communicating and presenting environmental data/politicizing of environmental data
  • citizen scientists
  • information as power
  • rhetoric
  • stakeholders and public participation

Visualization

  • Cool displays, youtube videos, etc.
  • Environmental modeling- types of environmental models
  • GIS

Disasters and Catastrophes

  • Environmental causes
  • Environmental results
    • Katrina, Pakistan floods, Indonesian tsunami, etc.
  • role of environmental information in dealing with environmental disasters.
    • how does access to environmental information help, are there negatives to access, who has access and how, to what?
  • Dealing with risk. Risk management, risk communication

Sharing and collaborating around EI

  • Networks (sharing research)

Brainstorming Topics

  • PARCC parameters and their relevance to data
  • Environmental information in science education
    • need for, role of, lack of, examples of (Phenology and schools)
Personal tools