IASC hosted one day of a dataARC meeting at Rannís (the Icelandic Center for Research) in Reykjavík, Iceland in October 2017. This summary was contributed by dataARC Principal Investigator Dr. Colleen Strawhacker:
dataARC (https://www.data-arc.org/) is producing online tools and infrastructure to enable researchers from a broad range of disciplines to study the long-term human ecodynamics of the North Atlantic, including Iceland, Greenland, and the Orkney Islands. 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, from the humanities to paleoecology in order to truly understand these complex interactions. Datasets exist to be able to address these questions, but it remains difficult to discover these data, make them interoperable, formalize conceptual relationships among them, 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.
In order to succeed at these goals, the dataARC project supports our interdisciplinary, international team to meet in central locations 2-3 times per year to ensure communication across disciplinary boundaries and the incorporation of feedback into the ongoing production of online prototypes. In October 2017, dataARC held a large meeting for the project team, debuting a brand new prototype for the group (http://beta.data-arc.org/) to review. The first day of our meeting was generously hosted by IASC; this space was essential in allowing our group of 20 - from 7 different countries - to review project progress and the new prototype, provide feedback, as well as to meet in a central location in Reykjavik. The other meeting days were hosted by the Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies and the University of Iceland, allowing our group to experience a diversity of spaces and parts of Reykjavik, while allowing us to use funds to support various aspects of the dataARC project, including the support of graduate students and early career researchers.