One of the most influential figures in the history of scientific and technical (S&T) data, Dr. David R. Lide has been a leader in virtually every aspect of improving the quality, accessibility and management of S&T data. From 1969 to 1988 Lide was the Director of the NIST Standard Reference Data Program (NSRDS), the first centralized program to systematically collect and evaluated S&T data. During that time, he established long-term data centers in numerous areas of chemistry, physics, and materials science, bringing in a new generation of scientists dedicated to S&T data. He was the founding editor of the Journal of Physical and Chemical Reference Data, the first major periodical dedicated to S&T data. In the 1980s, Lide led NIST NSRDS into the computer age, first supporting the computerization of all data center activities and then leading production of PC-based data products containing highly evaluated data.
Recognizing the international nature of S&T data, Dr. Lide was an early and long-time leader in CODATA, serving as Secretary General (1982 to 1986) and then President (1986 to 1990). During his tenure he negotiated the entrance of both the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy in Taipei into CODATA, as well as the Czech Republic, Hungary, South Africa, and South Korea.
Perhaps more significantly, Lide was one of the first to realize the importance of creating internationally-accepted, high quality, consensus-driven fundamental data sets under CODATA auspices, in areas as diverse as chemical thermodynamics, fundamental physical constants, and chemical kinetics. These data sets remain significant even today.
David R. Lide will receive the Prize at SciDataCon 2016, Denver, Colorado, USA on 11-13 September 2016. SciDataCon 2016 ‘Advancing the Frontiers of Data in Research’ is part of International Data Week.
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