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DataARC - a Cyberinfrastructure to Enable Interdisciplinary Research on the Long-Term Human Ecodynamics of the North Atlantic

Research project DataARC will produce online tools and infrastructure to enable researchers from a broad range of disciplines to study human ecodynamics in the North Atlantic context, by linking a range of international databases across a range of research fields.

Research on the interactions between Arctic environments and people requires linking data from over thousands of square km, hundreds of years, and multiple disciplines, from climatology to archaeology to the humanities. Datasets often exist to help address these questions, but are difficult to find, make interoperable, and analyze and visualize. Investing in comprehensive online cyberinfrastructure facilitates the linking collaborators and data from the natural sciences, social sciences, and the humanities, and thus opportunities for a holistic approach to understanding the rapid social and environmental changes that occurred in the past.

Head of project

Philip Buckland
Associate professor
E-mail
Email

Project overview

Project period:

2016-09-01 2019-09-09

Funding

Huvudman: Strawhacker et al., finansiar: NSF (USA), 2016-2019: SEK 9,722,193

Participating departments and units at Umeå University

Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious studies, Faculty of Arts

Research subject

Archaeology, Biological sciences, Earth science, History

Project description

This project will produce online tools and infrastructure to enable researchers from a broad range of disciplines to study human ecodynamics in the North Atlantic context. Climate and environments in the North Atlantic are changing rapidly and unpredictably, and local northern residents are being forced to adapt in many different ways. Data from archaeology, historic documents, climate science, and the humanities in the North Atlantic indicate that this is not the first time humans in the region of the world have faced this challenge. Research on the interactions between Arctic environments and people requires linking data from over thousands of square miles, hundreds of years, and multiple disciplines, from climatology to archaeology to the humanities to truly understand these complex interactions. Datasets often exist to be able to address these questions, but it remains difficult to find these data, make them interoperable, and analyze and visualize them in new and meaningful ways. Investing in comprehensive online cyberinfrastructure provides the opportunity to link collaborators and data from the natural sciences, social sciences, and the humanities, resulting in the opportunity for a holistic approach to understand the rapid social and environmental changes that occurred in the past and for the creation of digital tools for expanded capacity to engage other users, including students and Indigenous northern communities.

The DataARC project will create data-intensive online tools and infrastructure to connect archaeologists, climate scientists, humanists, and local communities with data and vignettes directly from researchers to study the long-term human ecodynamics of the North Atlantic. The ultimate goal of this project is to transform the discoverability and utility of data collected over multiple decades by multiple disciplines. The four main products of this project will be, (1) data discovery and visualization tools for multidisciplinary data from the North Atlantic, (2) a system for repeated harvesting, transformation, aggregation, indexing, and access to link databases, (3) training modules to encourage data producers and stakeholder institutions to modernize their data practices, and (4) outreach vignettes anchored in real scientific data that highlight the importance of the long-term human ecodynamics in the North Atlantic. The construction of this linked and distributed cyberinfrastructure will provide a unique opportunity to conduct genuinely transformative, collaborative research to connect natural science, social science, environmental humanities, Indigenous knowledge, and innovative data visualization in order to address the cultural and environmental drivers of the long-term human ecodynamics of the North Atlantic.

Core Cyberinfrastructure Team:
• Colleen Strawhacker, National Snow and Ice Data Center, University of Colorado
• Adam Brin, Digital Antiquity, Arizona State University
• Rachel Opitz, University of South Florida
• Peter Pulsifer, National Snow and Ice Data Center, University of Colorado
• Jack Cothren, Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies, University of Arkansas
Core Data Team:
• Tom McGovern, City University of New York
• Philip Buckland, Umea University
• Emily Lethbridge, University of Iceland
• Anthony Newton, University of Edinburgh
• Gisli Palsson, Umea University
• Tom Ryan, City University of New York
• Ingrid Mainland, University of the Highlands and Islands
Core Outreach Team:
• Tom Dawson, University of St Andrews
• Rachel Opitz, University of South Florida