Building Community and Support for Open Science at Carnegie Mellon University – A Conference Report
Open science is one of the major ways to combat the "reproducibility crisis" plaguing many areas of research, from biomedical research to psychology and data science. Despite growing interest and increasing mandates to make research outputs openly available and to facilitate collaboration through open data and research tools, barriers exist that prevent the broader adoption of open science. Lack of incentives, metrics, and an open culture persist as main roadblocks to the adoption of open science practices. Universities' libraries are playing increasingly important roles in open science adoption by providing training, resources, and expertise. However, one of the challenges many libraries face is the ability to connect and collaborate with the research community. Facing this challenge, three liaison librarians at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) teamed up with faculty in Biological Sciences, thanks to the embedded liaison model at CMU. Together, we obtained a joint grant from the DSF Charitable Foundation (through the Mellon College of Science) to host a transdisciplinary Open Science Symposium on Oct 18-19, 2018. Comprised of a series of presentations, panel discussion, hands-on workshops and a "scientific speed dating" event, this symposium stimulated discussions about opportunities and challenges in open science practices, accelerated the adoption of open research tools, and built community and collaborations in life sciences and related disciplines. We expected this event to be well-attended and highly interactive. In the first two weeks after the registration opened, an impressive response was received from CMU and nearby universities, with more than 75% or registrations being graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and faculty. As deliverables of the symposium, we will publish a conference report summarizing discussions at the symposium, make a set of recommendations for advancing open science at CMU, and make plans to host a future event to reach a broader set of disciplines.
This conference report was presented at the Coalition of Networked Information (CNI) Fall meeting, Washington DC, 10 December 2018.