About the project

No one is certain how much ecological data exists, or how this amount compares to the volume of data currently housed in repositories such as Knowledge Network for Biocomplexity (KNB). It would be useful to determine this for designing infrastructure, but also as a call to arms for ecologists to start sharing this “dark data”. For this project, we will develop a method for estimating the amount of ecological data being generated, with a focus on “small science” projects. Initially this project will involve brainstorming about the best way to estimate such a complex figure, and the Michelle will then be tasked with producing the estimate using the decided upon methods. Potential methods for estimation may include sampling publications, surveying scientists, or exploring existing databases. We foresee that results from this project will be highly cited since such an estimate is useful for discussions about data sharing, data reuse, and repository development in Ecology.

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