University Libraries Dean Tyler Walters participated in a panel discussion at a December 2018 membership meeting of the Coalition for Networked Information to discuss findings from a National Science Foundation-funded workshop centered around public access to federally funded data.

The Coalition for Networked Information promotes the use of information technology to advance scholarship and education. Its membership includes more than 250 organizations from higher education, publishing, information technology, scholarly and professional organizations, foundations, libraries, and library organizations.

During the panel discussion, Walters, Association of Research Libraries Executive Director Mary Lee Kennedy, Assistant Vice President of STEM Education Policy for the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities Kacy Reed, and Policy Associate for the Association of American Universities Katie Steen described progress made during the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) and the Association of American Universities (AAU) Public Access Working Group workshop.

The workshop followed a report by the Association of American Universities Public Access Working Group, of which Walters is a member.

More than 30 universities were invited to the October 2018 workshop, including Virginia Tech. The goal of the National Science Foundation-funded APLU and AAU workshop was to advance institutional plans to provide public access to federally funded research data, foster collaboration, build consensus around requirements for managing openly accessible data, and encourage discussion to support common approaches to research data sharing.

“It’s imperative that library leaders, chief information officers, data scientists, vice presidents of research, provosts, and faculty from universities across the country come together to make progress in overcoming the challenges of making research data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable,” said Walters.

“At Virginia Tech, the University Libraries is committed to providing services to the faculty related to their research and data management planning in order to continue Virginia Tech’s commitment to serve society and shape the future,” said Walters. “In order to serve society, universities should strive to make research data available for re-analysis and extension to potentially fuel greater discovery.”