Community for Data Integration (CDI)
The USGS Science Strategy recognizes six strategic science directions and defines data integration as an additional, cross-cutting science direction. Fundamental to addressing Earth science challenges is the requirement for "a more integrated and accessible environment for vast resources of past and future data" and the encouragement of innovation to advance scientific discovery and insight "through the development and application of state-of-the-art technologies."
Scientific insight requires the ability to discover, access, and use relevant data and to share research results for use by others. The complex nature of problems facing society demands an interdisciplinary response that can be attained only when researchers can efficiently locate, retrieve, and use data from multiple disciplines and achieve real synthesis that is truly "trans-disciplinary."
It is this backdrop that led to the formation of CDI in 2009. CDI is charged to:
With about 50 participants, CDI first convened in Denver in September 2009 to build the community and to identify high-value data integration opportunities that would leverage resources to augment and extend existing science center data integration efforts to all USGS scientists.
As of 2012, the Community has grown to more than 150 data providers and consumers across all geographic and mission areas of the USGS and includes a broad array of partners in government, academia, and industry.
CDI has leveraged the application development and data management expertise in science centers and programs to produce tools and resources that greatly ease the sometimes daunting jobs of data integration and analysis typically performed by scientists conducting multi-disciplinary studies.
CDI consists of several working groups, which include: