Community update, July 2022

Here are a few updates from Dryad that we hope folks will find of interest. If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to contact us, via hello [at] datadryad [dot] org.


First up: Our long-time Product Manager Daniella Lowenberg is taking on an exciting new appointment at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as Senior Advisor for Data Governance and will be leaving Dryad later this month. In her new role, Daniella will lead the development of strategy and systems to support public and restricted access to human services data. For more details about her assignment, please check out the University of California announcement here. While we’re sorry to lose her, we’re also so excited for Daniella to take on this amazing opportunity.

It’s difficult to overstate the extent of Daniella’s contributions across our organisation; I know she’s been a valuable, responsive, and knowledgeable collaborator for many of you, as well as a driving force behind data publishing and standards-setting over the last several years. Her loss will be felt deeply – as deeply as her energy, character and expertise have infused Dryad since 2018 and will energise us as we move forward. Please join me in congratulating Daniella on her fabulous new role. She can be reached via Daniella.Lowenberg [at] ucop [dot] edu.

Daniella leaves us in style – posting just last week the outcomes of her collaboration with data scientist and ecologist Karthik Ram and plans to make Dryad more data science friendly. We’ll be improving data quality at submission, considering substantial changes to the interface, and exploring feature sets around file manifests, tabular file previews, rendered READMEs, README templates, and much more.  

Welcome to new team & community members

Many of you will now have met Mark Kurtz, Dryad Head of Business Operations, who joined us in March. Not one for fanfare, Mark didn’t want us to press-release his joining the team, but we must say how thrilled we are to have him on board and what a difference it’s made to have such a skilled and experienced operator on hand. You can learn a little more about Mark on our team page. We’re soon to be joined by a new Senior Full Stack Developer and a Head of Partnership Development (for which we’re still inviting applications). We hope to announce all the new members of the team (including Mark!) in the Autumn. 

Dryad is also pleased to welcome a number of new members to our growing community: the Australian Wine Research Institute (AUS); Hindawi (UK); Northwestern University (USA); Rockefeller University (USA); University of Rochester (USA); and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USA)

NIH GREI Initiative

At the beginning of the year, the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Data Science Strategy announced the Generalist Repository Ecosystem Initiative (GREI) which we are pleased to be a part of. We’re working with five other generalist repositories “to establish consistent metadata, develop use cases for data sharing, train and educate researchers on FAIR data and the importance of data sharing” and look forward to working closely with NIH in preparation for the updated  NIH Data Sharing and Management Policy roll-out in 2023. 

Bits and bobs

Catching up after COVID, we’ve now released our Annual Report for the fiscal year 2021 (FY21) (summer 2020 to summer 2021). FY22 is coming soon.

And – finally – at a Database Sustainability Symposium hosted by Phoenix Bioinformatics in March, Jen spoke about Dryad’s community of support, our commitment to the Principles for Open Scholarly Infrastructure (POSI) and what I’ve come to grasp about our 15-year history. If you’re interested, take a look.

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