On Friday February 1st took place de second meeting of the Group of Experts in Digital Skills for Science, a panel convened by the OECD Global Science Forum with the goal of developing a framework to define the digital skills required in the era of Open Science, the trend that aims to ensure that the results of publicly funded research (papers and research) are open for public access in digital format without or at leat with minimum.
Marcelo Arenas, director of the Millennium Institute Foundational Research on Data and Professor of the Department of Computer Science of Catholic University of Chile, was invited to be part of this panel of specialists and was present last Friday at the group meeting.
Intensive use of data
From the headquarters of the OECD in Paris, Arenas comments that “this group aims to identify the different digital skills required by people working in this field in terms of roles, but also what are and will be the needs those roles will fulfill in an organization dedicated to data intensive science”.
And that was a highlight of the debate, Arena says, since the panel specified what will be understood by Data Intensive Science: “It includes all those disciplines, organizations, research groups or areas in which the use of data is fundamental. Intensive does refer to much more than the volume of data, but to every area where data plays a fundamental role”.
During the meeting, the group advanced in the framework that will facilitate in the future to identify the roles that data professionals can and will play in the organizations, such as data engineers, data analysts and knowledge engineers, among many other profiles still to be defined.
“In addition, we discussed the different competences these roles should possess, such as advanced knowledge of data storage systems, classification, data curation, data integration and data management, among others”, says Arenas.
With this framework, an organization will be able to understand what its needs are and, accordingly, identify the different types of professionals it would require.
New needs in science
The OECD created this panel in 2018, at the 38th Global Science Forum, taking into account that sciences are increasingly dependent on data, which represents a challenge for training, particularly in those areas that historically have been less intense in computational requirements.
“One of the most interesting points -and one that is aligned with the relevance our institute asignes to multidisciplinary research in data- is that this group of experts is addressing its work considering the social sciences, education, public and private services, infrastructure requirements and much more”, concludes Marcelo Arenas.