Press release: Jason Williams named Dryad Board Chair

Dryad, the open data publishing platform and community committed to the open availability and routine reuse of all research data, welcomes Jason Williams as chair of the Board of Directors for the 2022-2023 term. Williams succeeds outgoing board chair Johan Nilsson of Oikos Editorial Office in Lund, Sweden.

Portrait of Jason Williams.

“I’m thrilled to have been selected by my colleagues to take up the position of Chair,” Williams said. “Dryad’s unique position of trust with scientific communities and individual scientists comes from a shared desire not just to make data available, but to realize the full value of data. Dryad’s focus on curation adds value to research products, and our commitment to advancing open science for everyone resonates with our community. I’ll work to honor, reinforce, and expand upon these values in this new role.” 

Williams is particularly committed to advancing the values of diversity and inclusion in the Dryad community. “A key priority for my term will be supporting researchers from groups that have been historically excluded. It will be important to ensure that new and increasing obligations to make data open include researchers working in contexts with fewer resources, ” Williams said.

Williams is Assistant Director, Diversity and Research Readiness  at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory DNA Learning Center in New York, USA, where he develops national biology education programs. He leads education, outreach, and training for CyVerse (US national cyberinfrastructure for the life sciences) and has trained thousands of students, researchers and educators in bioinformatics, data science, and molecular biology. Williams is also founder of LifeSciTrainers.org – a global effort to promote community of practice among professionals who develop short-format training for life scientists. He is a member of and has chaired science advisory boards in the US, UK, and Australia, Williams teaches at the Yeshiva University High School for Girls.

“Jason has an incredible richness of experience in helping individual scientists to do their work more effectively with the latest resources – and helping the rest of us to learn from that experience,” said Dryad’s Executive Director, Jen Gibson. “It’s been a pleasure to work with Jason over the last year and I’m so pleased he’s agreed to take on this leadership role for Dryad.” 

Jason assumes the role of Chair as a new cohort of Board members joins and Dryad announces an expansion of the team. Learn more about our board of directors at https://datadryad.org/stash/our_governance

For more information or to request an interview, please contact sarah@datadryad.org.   

About Dryad
Dryad is an open data curation and publishing organization that focuses on the access and reuse of diverse globally produced research data. The last several years have seen significant growth for Dryad, with thousands more datasets added each year, new international institutional members coming on board, more sophisticated publisher integrations, and industry leading features for authors – including a partnership with Zenodo for the support of software publishing. Most recently, Dryad announced our alignment with policy guidance from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, demonstrating how we support researchers, institutions, and publishers to comply with open data policies.

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Feedback and questions are always welcome, to hello@datadryad.org

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Price change: We’re updating our fee for authors

In recognition of current costs, we’re increasing the Dryad data publication fee to $150, effective January 2023. 

Key points 

  • The fee for researchers submitting directly to Dryad, and not in affiliation with an institution or journal that covers fees on their behalf, will increase from $120 to 150. 
  • The increase focuses on cost-recovery, not generating a margin, and is based on an analysis of Dryad costs that was completed in July 2021. (See our latest Annual Report for information on costs).
  • Between July 2021 and June 2022, over 1,700 individual researchers paid Dryad directly to publish their data. Another 126 were not asked to pay a fee on the basis that they submitted from a country included in our waiver policy or made a special request.
  • Seven publishers, 17 academic societies & research organizations, and 51 institutions work with Dryad to cover costs for individuals submitting data in affiliation with them. The change does not affect our membership agreements.
  • The fee was last increased in January 2016.

We’re sensitive to the fact that fees for individual researchers are a burden and create inequities. Our partnerships with journals and institutions, whereby researchers submit data to Dryad in affiliation with either one, circumvent fees for researchers altogether. Expanding these partnerships is key to alleviating this burden on individuals and maintaining an important revenue stream for Dryad.

In the meantime, to better accommodate researchers who lack funds to pay the fee for any reason, beyond and including their geographic location, we’ll expand our waiver policy so that any author may request one. 

We’re prepared to reverse fees for individuals associated with journals or institutions that join Dryad within 90 days of the change taking effect. Please contact us via hello [at] datadryad [dot] org

Finally, a note on our costs: The Dryad organization is experiencing a lot of change. Our team is growing and increasing in specialism to better support the journals, institutions and researchers that entrust their data to us. We are receiving many more submissions each month, and are well-positioned to support emerging policies for public access to research data (such as those from the U.S. White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and National Institutes of Health). Our focus in the last year has been on optimizing our processes and achieving cost-efficiencies, the results of which will be shared in our upcoming annual reports. 

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Feedback and questions are always welcome, to hello@datadryad.org

To keep in touch with the latest updates from Dryad, follow us on TwitterFacebook or LinkedIn.

New at Dryad: Latest changes to our governing board

Dryad is pleased to announce the members of our Board of Directors for the 2022-2023 term. This group of accomplished and passionate individuals will guide the organization as we address major national policy developments, expand our global membership program, and enhance our publishing platform to serve the evolving needs of researchers. 

The Dryad Board of Directors is composed of 12 individuals who represent different stakeholders and voices in open research data publishing. They are recruited for their particular skills or perspectives, according to the needs of the organization each year, and ratified by a vote of the Dryad membership. Each member serves three years, and assumes responsibility for overseeing the healthy performance of Dryad as a non-profit organization and the realization of our mission: to enable and promote the re-use of research data. The California Digital Library, a major partner to Dryad, is represented on the board as an ex-officio member. 

We are grateful for the dedicated service of our outgoing members Wolfram Horstmann, Director of Göttingen State and University Library; Catriona MacCallum, Director of Open Science at Hindawi Ltd; Naomi Penfold, Research Data Analyst, Invest In Open Infrastructure; and Johan Nilsson of Oikos Editorial Office who will carry on as Ex-Officio.

We offer a warm welcome to our newest members Andrew Beckerman, Professor of Evolutionary Ecology at the University of Sheffield; Barbara Ebert, Executive Secretary, German Federation for Biological Data e.V. (GFBio); Kristi Holmes, Director of Galter Health Sciences Library & Learning Center and Professor of Preventive Medicine (Health & Biomedical Informatics) at Northwestern University; and Devika Madalli, Professor of the Documentation Research and Training Centre, Indian Statistical Institute and Adjunct faculty, DISI, University of Trento. We are grateful for the wealth and diversity of knowledge and experience each of these individuals will bring to their roles on the Dryad board.

The full Dryad Governing Board now includes:

  • Andrew Beckerman, University of Sheffield (UK)
  • Barbara Ebert,​​ German Federation for Biological Data e.V. (Germany)
  • Scott Edmunds, GigaScience (CHN)
  • Brooks Hanson, American Geophysical Union (USA) 
  • Kristi Holmes, Northwestern University (USA)
  • Devika Madalli, Indian Statistical Institute (IN)
  • Ian Mulvany, British Medical Journal (UK)
  • Fiona Murphy, MoreBrains Cooperative (UK)
  • Johan Nilsson, Oikos Editorial Office (Sweden) (Ex-officio)
  • Iratxe Puebla, ASAPbio (UK)
  • Judy Ruttenberg, Association of Research Libraries (USA)
  • Caroline Sutton, STM (The International Association for Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers) (NOR)
  • Jason Williams, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (USA)
  • Günter Waibel, California Digital Library (USA)(Ex-officio)

More information is available at https://datadryad.org/stash/our_governance

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Feedback and questions are always welcome, to hello@datadryad.org. To keep in touch with the latest updates from Dryad, follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

U.S. policy: Dryad welcomes OSTP memorandum on ensuring free, immediate, and equitable access to federally funded research

Dryad welcomes the U.S. White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) memorandum on ensuring free, immediate, and equitable access. As a platform for the curation and open publication of data serving the research community since 2008, Dryad is well-positioned to support research communities that will rapidly need to develop research management strategies in response to the policy and to augment capacity for institutions and publishers confronting a coming wave of open research outputs. 

The memorandum requires United States (U.S.) federal granting bodies to develop and implement new policies making all tax-payer funded scholarly research and underlying raw data freely and publicly available without embargo by 2026. In addition to removing the embargo period for public access to research articles, the memorandum also significantly strengthens the data sharing plans of its 2013 predecessor by requiring that data underlying peer-reviewed research articles be made immediately available upon publication. 

The updated policy sets high expectations for federal agencies to improve research integrity and reproducibility by:

  1. requiring immediate, open deposit of data underlying scholarly research,
  2. instructing agencies to develop plans for open deposit of data not associated with a publication,
  3. encouraging the use of repositories that align with the National Science and Technology Council’s (NSTC) “Desirable Characteristics of Data Repositories for Federally Funded Research”, and
  4. calling for these open outputs to be described with robust metadata, including author and co-author information, publication date, and persistent identifiers.

The curation and publishing services Dryad offers to researchers already align with the key provisions outlined above.

  1. After undergoing our careful curation process, all data published with Dryad are made immediately available under a CC0 license.
  2. Dryad accepts data regardless of its connection to a published research article, and makes it easy to connect datasets with other research outputs, including articles, software, data management plans, and supplemental information using their persistent identifiers. 
  3. Dryad already aligns with the NSTC’s “Desirable Characteristics of Data Repositories for Federally Funded Research. ” Learn more about how in our recent blog post.
  4. Dryad supports the DataCite metadata schema and uses persistent identifier registries including the Research Organization Registry (ROR), ORCID, and Crossref’s Funder Registry to link datasets with their producers and funders.

We look forward to the opportunity to work with the research community to support compliance with the new policy and build a more open, transparent, and equitable future for taxpayer-funded research. 

Feedback and questions are always welcome, to hello@datadryad.org

To keep in touch with the latest updates from Dryad, follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

Upcoming event: How to align with new US data access policies

A Dryad Open House

Please join us Wednesday, November 30 to explore how Dryad can help researchers, institutions and publishing organizations meet the requirements of new policies for open access to research data. 

The White House is the latest to recommend open access to the data underpinning federally funded research, with the release of a recent memo from the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). The recommendations for public access to research and data have long been in the works, and strongly align with the policy for data management and sharing announced earlier by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH). The NIH policy takes effect in January 2023, while the US agencies affected by the OSTP recommendations have a few more years. 

Simply posting data to the Internet isn’t enough to meet emerging standards. 

The 2021 “Guide to Accelerate Public Access to Research Data”, from the Association of American Universities and Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, says: 

“Federal agencies now see transparent sharing of well-documented data as central to addressing issues of research integrity. Transparency enables others to understand the context (goals), process (methods), and products (article, data, code, etc.), and to evaluate the quality, relevance, and limitations of research for the specific question being investigated.”

The NIH final policy (NOT-OD-21-013) emphasizes that “Data should be of sufficient quality to validate and replicate research findings”.

Dryad’s data curation and publishing process, online since 2008 and continuously improved since, can help researchers, institutions and publishing organizations satisfy new requirements readily and easily. Please join us to learn how. 

Our next Open House is on Wednesday, November 30, 2022.

Register here to join at 6:00 AM PST / 9:00 AM EST / 2:00 PM GMT / 7:30 PM IST 

Register here to join at 10:00 AM PST / 1:00 PM EST / 6:00 PM GMT / 11:30 PM IST 

For additional times, please see https://www.timeanddate.com/time/map 

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To keep in touch with the latest updates from Dryad, follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

Job opening: Full-time data curator (Remote, USA)

Dryad is now recruiting for a Data Curator to help drive and maintain the highest standards for research data curation quality and efficiency. Our future Data Curator will perform data curation tasks, and assist with process improvements, policy implementation, recruitment, and training. 

Qualifications

To thrive, grow and be successful in this role, the candidate should have at least one higher education qualification in biology (preferred) or related research experience and possess the following:

  • Experience working with data in either a research or curation capacity (quantitative and qualitative)
  • Skilled with multiple types of research management and analysis software, both open source and proprietary (such as TextEditor, QGIS, Octave, ImageJ, RStudio)
  • Excellent skills in time-management, organization, collaboration, and communication – verbal and written

Responsibilities

  • Curate and publish research data: evaluate metadata to comply with Dryad’s guidelines for publication, working in collaboration with authors to make data openly available to access and reuse
  • Maintain high standards for curation service delivery, including responsiveness, speed, quality and integrity
  • Maintain relationships with editors, ensuring clear, open and consistent communication about ongoing curation and publication as well as Dryad policies and service
  • Assist with creating and maintaining Dryad documentation
  • Participate in team recruitment and training efforts:
  • Identify opportunities for process optimization and assist with implementation

Important Characteristics

  • Customer service-oriented 
  • Ability to work with minimal supervision
  • Able to work individually and within a team
  • Proactive and committed to continuous improvement
  • Passionate about open science and Dryad’s mission

Helpful but Not Required

  • Familiarity with citation styles and formats, DOIs and other identifiers, indexing services and databases, and citation management software
  • Exposure to metadata standards (XML, etc.)
  • Experience in programming (R/python) and data analysis

Compensation and Benefits

This is a fully remote, full-time hourly position based in the United States. We offer benefits and competitive compensation of $18-23/hour, depending on experience. 

US candidates must be based in any of the following states: 

California, Florida, Indiana, North Carolina, Nebraska, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia,  and Washington.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Dryad is dedicated to providing a welcoming and supportive environment for all people, regardless of background or identity. We are an equal opportunity employer and give consideration for employment to qualified applicants without regard to age, race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, marital status, disability or protected veteran status, or any other status or characteristic protected by US federal, state, or local law. We encourage all qualified individuals to apply.

To Apply

Please submit a resume or CV and cover letter expressing why the Data Curator role at Dryad would be a good fit for you – to jobs@datadryad.org. Applications without a cover letter will not be considered. Informal inquiries are very welcome, to our Head of Publishing Services, Jess Herzog via jherzog@datadryad.org. The position is open now and applications will be considered on a rolling basis until the role is filled. Informal inquiries are very welcome. 

20 September 2022

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.

Community discussion: Making FAIR data-sharing accessible with Dryad  

The work we do to make data findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable and to bring it to life for the benefit of future users is Publishing.

Video recording of the FAIR Data in Practice event, organized by Open Research London, on 1 February, 2022. Watch it here

Feedback and questions are always welcome, to hello@datadryad.org

To keep in touch with the latest updates from Dryad, follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

The Dryad Collaboration: An invitation to libraries

Jen Gibson, Executive Director 

At the Winter meeting of the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) in December, I had the chance to present for the first time (for me) Dryad’s invitation to collaborate for academic and research libraries. It was three years ago, at this same meeting, where library colleagues met to discuss Dryad’s prospective role and how we might supplement ongoing initiatives for open research and repository systems on campus. 

I’ll revisit the highlights of my presentation here, with an open invitation to academic and research libraries and their networks to please get in touch to discuss further. Please don’t hesitate to contact me via jgibson[at]datadryad.org. 

CNI has shared a video of the presentation, here. I am introduced by John Chodacki, Director of UC3 at the California Digital Library, who speaks to their motivations for investing in Dryad.

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At the time of writing, our institutional membership program has connected Dryad with forty three academic institutions. It’s a program for institutions designed by institutions, having been developed at a workshop of academic and research library representatives in 2019. Institutional member dues represent 25% of Dryad’s non-grant revenue at the moment. 

Our members are listed here. Given the chance to read it, I hope readers would notice that small and large institutions are represented, and that we have some geographical reach – although we want to have much more. 

The proposal

We’ve designed the fees to be cost-effective ($3,000 for teaching institutions and $13,000 for the largest research institutions), and it’s not always the library that pays. The Dryad collaboration is a compelling proposition for information technology services and research administration, as well.

In recognition of their investment, Dryad members receive a breadth of benefits, from unlimited data publishing deposits (for submissions affiliated with your institution) and an activity dashboard to prominent branding and technical support. Dryad members have the power to vote in our annual election of governing board members – helping to preserve Dryad as a community-owned resource with community interests in mind. And, many use our API to integrate Dryad data and metadata with local resources – whether mirroring all our research data in their local institutional repository, or adding just the metadata to their catalogue, for example. 

Our member benefits are set out on our website, here

The incentive 

Before revisiting why institutions have invested in the Dryad collaboration, allow me to emphasise that we’re a data publishing platform and community committed to the open sharing and re-use of all research data. We’re part of a network of interconnected systems and initiatives that advance open research using modern technology, and sit alongside domain repositories, institutional repositories, other generalist repositories, and other services, such as the Data Curation Network.

Our vision is for all research data to be openly available and routinely re-used, and we help by enabling and promoting the re-use of research data through the Dryad platform and our integrations. We make it easy and powerful to share, and compelling to reuse research data.

Institutions are investing in Dryad because: 

  1. We’re a powerful ally in achieving your open research strategy
  2. Many research communities already come to Dryad to share their data
  3. Our integrations with publishers help capture data at the right moment, as part of a focal workflow
  4. We help advocate for – and exemplify – best practises in data sharing and the potential for data re-use
  5. We share your values. As a non-profit organisation, we’re driven by our mission and vision, and want to contribute to a global environment for research that is equitable and inclusive as well as open. 

All that said, one of the key questions for our institutional partners is how we supplement institutional and other campus repositories, which have already drawn significant investment. So, a couple of points to help: 

  • The first is that Dryad publishes data exclusively, while IRs and other generalist repositories publish a wide range of content.
  • The second is, as above, that members can mirror our metadata and/or data in other repositories (including Dataverse, for example) or catalogues. 

Dryad’s aim is to connect and support, to be an important part of our members’ puzzle, rather than a one-stop shop. 

The potential

As a new Executive Director, I see a lot of potential here, and know that Dryad has gained some traction with the program in the last couple of years, but I wonder what our readers think. 

In closing, I’d like to offer a few thoughts on the future shape of our collaboration, given my past experience working with academic institutions on open research programs. 

  1. First, given my work at SPARC and on projects like Open Access Week, I can’t help but ask if we shouldn’t collaborate around open data advocacy and education? Can Dryad be a ‘depository’ or locus for organised outreach? How do we leverage the momentum, and help connect information and resources with those who need them?
  2. Second, having worked so closely with researchers over the last ten years, working to convince them to change their publishing behaviours and how they judge their fellows, I can’t help but wonder what power there may be in – finally – altering research assessment, if we’re able to get people to interact with and use the data. If we can bring it to life for them, make the data compelling to reuse, and create a feedback loop for researchers who do share, could we move researchers to begin crediting data sharing themselves?? 
  3. And, finally, there is great interest in helping community-driven and open-source initiatives to persist and thrive in a competitive marketplace. I’m certainly interested, and have a number of plans for Dryad. I wonder how my plans sit with yours, and how we work together to achieve this.

I’ll look forward to working with all our current and prospective members in refining our offering and collaborating to advance open research.

Again, your thoughts are very welcome, to jgibson[at]datadryad.org.

Thoughts on open research: A modern take on research communication, Part I.

By Jennifer Gibson

What if we could start all over again? Knowing what we know now, about the needs for research and the opportunities to improve the human condition, about the power of the Internet, and about the importance of the global village, what would we want publishing to look like? How would we use instant online sharing? How would we tap into experts in other corners of the globe? How would we design a system that truly accelerates discovery for the benefit of everyone? The first in a four-part series published by the FORCE11 Upstream Blog: https://upstream.force11.org/a-modern-take-on-research-communication/.

Feedback and questions are always welcome, to hello@datadryad.org

To keep in touch with the latest updates from Dryad, follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.