The 14th International Digital Curation Conference is going to Melbourne in February 2019 and we have an exciting programme packed with workshops, papers, posters and demos. The theme of the conference is Collaborations and Partnerships: addressing the big digital challenges together. This is a topic close to DCC’s heart and modus operandi, and is particularly fitting to the Australian context where links with the wider international research data community are key.
The conference theme has inspired a dynamic mix of papers and sessions. As usual we have strands on metadata, digital curation, skills, models and tools. This year also sees particularly strong clusters of papers on digital humanities, creative arts curation and disciplinary challenges. We’re also delighted to see that the theme and conference location have generated sessions on curating indigenous data and building diverse and inclusive communities.
The conference will see two keynotes and a plenary discussion. Christine Kenneally, an independent journalist, will open the conference with a keynote on “Data, the creation of history and its impact on real lives.” She will present a case study of information security and information entropy in the history of childcare institutions in Australia and the United States, illuminating the critical role that data curators have to play, not just in the creation of history, but in its impact on individual lives.
Day two will start with a plenary discussion between Nancy McGovern and Clifford Lynch on digital practice and collaboration. This will build on a discussion between Nancy and Cliff following her closing keynote at IDCC18, which made an impassioned call for collaboration across communities and inclusivity. It is an opportunity to explore the issues, elaborating on key challenges we face in the digital age and proposing methods to overcome these.
The conference will close with a keynote from Dr Patricia Brennan, the Director of the US National Library of Medicine (NLM), on “Jumping into the stream of data curation.” As the largest collection of biomedical research and data in the world, the NLM plays key roles in supporting data-driven discovery and promoting health data standards. Hearing about the NLM activities and strategy will provide inspiration on how we can all better locate, reuse, and enrich data resources.
The conference will open on Monday 4th February with a day of workshops and will close with an unconference on Thursday 7th February. Workshop registration is open and includes opportunities to learn about supporting data management in academic institutions, digital preservation carpentry, software curation and peer-to-peer training. See the full programme and price details here. The unconference is a new angle to IDCC. We’re very conscious that the papers and discussions over coffee often lead to new ideas and collaborations, and there is not always enough time and space to explore these at the event. We introduced Birds of a Feather sessions a few years ago and these have been incredibly popular and productive.
The unconference is a way for us to give emerging ideas more dedicated time and space – a whole day in fact! As you’ll see, the programme is blank and will remain so until the event. We’ll invite people to contribute ideas and to pitch these at the outset. The agenda will be set on the day by people voting with their feet and deciding what they want to work on. For my own part, I’m interested to try and map across the different FAIR data activities internationally – how similar are the recommendations that are emerging and what disciplinary differences and needs are being uncovered through use cases. Anyone can attend the unconference, so if you’re local and are just interested in brainstorming and working on data issues with an international community for a day, please sign up. I’m really excited to see how we can take ideas that emerge from the conference though and generate them into some practical action while the enthusiasm and creativity is there. Strike while the iron is hot!
As always, IDCC will have a number of social events. There will be pre-conference drinks at the Woodward Conference Centre. Located on the 10th floor of the Melbourne Law School, the building offers stunning views to the west of the city. Continuing the trend of socialising with good views, the tapas-style conference dinner will take place at General Assembly with waterfront views, the city skyline and a band to entertain us. Delegates will also have access to the University of Melbourne private staff club which has many informal indoor and outdoor spaces for quiet work or social networking. International attendees are likely to want to enjoy some holiday time in the sunshine too and Melbourne has a lot to offer. There are some links and ideas shared by the University of Melbourne on the website to help in your planning.
So, what are you waiting for? Make the case to attend, register and get your flights and hotels booked before they fill up. This is one conference you don’t want to miss!