Avert Bangladesh’s looming water crisis through open science and better data

“Access to data is a huge problem. Bangladesh collects a large amount of hydrological data, such as for stream flow, surface and groundwater levels, precipitation, water quality and water consumption. But these data are not readily available: researchers must seek out officials individually to gain access. India’s hydrological data can be similarly hard to obtain, preventing downstream Bangladesh from accurately predicting flows into its rivers….

Publishing hydrological data in an open-access database would be an exciting step. For now, however, the logistics, funding and politics to make on-the-ground data publicly available are likely to remain out of reach.

Fortunately, satellite data can help to fill the gaps. Current Earth-observing satellite missions, such as the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) Follow-On, the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) network, multiple radar altimeters and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensors make data freely available and can provide an overall picture of water availability across the country (this is what we used in many of our analyses). The picture is soon to improve. In December, NASA and CNES, France’s space agency, plan to launch the Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) satellite mission. SWOT will provide unprecedented information on global ocean and inland surface waters at fine spatial resolution, allowing for much more detailed monitoring of water levels than is possible today. The international scientific community has been working hard over the past 15 years to get ready to store, process and use SWOT data….

New open-science initiatives, particularly NASA’s Earth Information System, launched in 2021, can help by supporting the development of customized data-analysis and modelling tools (see go.nature.com/3cffbh9). The data we present here were acquired in this framework. We are currently working on an advanced hydrological model that will be capable of representing climate-change effects and human impacts on Bangladesh’s water availability. We expect that the co-development of such a modelling system with local partners will support decision-making….”

Open Science Stories

“Is there an open science story that made you say, “I need to get involved?” Do you remember a story about the impact of open data, open-source software, open publications on science? How has open science enabled scientific breakthroughs? Tell us about it! 

NASA’s Transform to Open Science (TOPS) mission is seeking compelling stories about open science in practice. To help transform NASA scientific processes to open science, we need to provide compelling and relatable examples that show how open science creates more impactful, efficient, inclusive science. By collecting these stories, we can start showing scientists how open science can help them.

We are looking for big, awe-inspiring stories about open data, open-source software, open results and open access, and the use of openly available tools for scientific practice. These stories could be about projects that utilize large amounts of data, about utilizing code on an open-source repository, about citizen scientists working together to identify constellations or clouds….”

How open source is supporting NASA’s new eyes in space | The GitHub Blog

” “Any rich nation can build a space telescope, but only a great nation gives its information away to the world to be used for the common heritage and betterment of mankind.” – Barbara Mikulski, former Maryland State Senator

Open source is the backbone of some of the greatest human achievements in technology. There’s a quiet power to open source communities and the contributors that power them. A developer never really truly knows how the code they are building will impact the broader technology ecosystem, but they know it’s likely to positively impact someone, somewhere. This ethos of sharing and contributing and never expecting a pat on the back is what makes open source and its contributors special, and is why it’s all the more exciting when a developer learns that that one contribution they made on a regular weekend has impacted something like flying a helicopter on Mars.

Just last month, we saw the long-awaited liftoff of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). We wanted to take a moment to celebrate NASA’s achievement and all the agencies involved, but also to take a step back and reflect on how open source has gradually become a key partner to scientists and astronomers alike….”

Association of Polar Early Career Scientists – IARPC Program Manager Chat – Supporting Open Polar and Cryospheric Science at NSF and NASA

“The Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC) announces their upcoming IARPC Program Manager Chat: Supporting Open Polar and Cryospheric Science at the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The webinar will take place 31 May 2022, 12:00-1:00 p.m. AKDT.

Webinar Description:

The new Arctic Research Plan 2022-2026 articulates the need for continued work towards ethically open data and research practices. But what does “open science” mean for Arctic research funders? And how can you get funding to support it?

Join this IARPC Program Officer Chat with Thorsten Markus and Kaitlin Harbeck (Program Officers for Cryospheric Sciences at NASA) and Allen Pope and Kelly Brunt (Program Officers in the NSF Office for Polar Programs) to talk about what open science means in their programs, and how NASA and NSF provide funding and support to advance open polar and cryospheric science. After short presentations, there will be ample time for questions with the panel of program officers….”

NASA Transform to Open Science Community Forum on May 12 – General – GOSH Community Forum

“As NASA’s Transform to Open Science 1 (TOPS) moves into the upcoming 2023 Year of Open Science, the TOPS team will regularly update the community on these activities, highlight open science success stories and lessons learned, Q&A, and other open science news in a series of TOPS Community Forums.

We invite you to join us May 12th at 2:00-3:00pm for NASA’s TOPS Community Forum. Participants can enter their question(s) or up-vote others’ questions – to help guide the discussions needed for successful implementation – after providing their first and last names and organizations at this portal: TOPS Community Engagement – NASA 1 . We will try to answer as many of the submitted questions as possible….”

Planetary Data System: Information for Data Proposers

“In response to a 2013 federal mandate the NASA Plan for Increasing Access to the Results of Scientific Research was developed to guide the management of and access to research data and peer-reviewed publications. Accordingly, the NASA Guidebook for Proposers describes the requirement that all proposals submitted under a NASA funding opportunity are required to submit a Data Management Plan. This website contains information and links that NASA’s Planetary Data System (PDS) believes will be helpful in preparing your proposal and your Data Management Plan, or simply as you develop a plan for archiving your data even if not as part of a funded proposal. If you have additional questions contact either the PDS or the relevant NASA Program Officer.

The intent of this website is to provide potential data providers with an overview of the appropriateness of the PDS as an archive for their data, the procedure for requesting letters of support for grant proposals, and the steps that a data provider would take in the generation of a PDS-compliant archive….”

Last updated October 2021.

NASA Open Source Science Workshop

“Last week NASA led an Open Source Science for Data Processing and Archives Workshop, announcing new initiatives to support open science. This was very exciting to be a part of — we learned about NASA’s continuing leadership in open science and presented some of our work with Openscapes. This is a brief summary, and will be updated with links to slides and recordings….”

Transform to Open Science (TOPS) | Science Mission Directorate

“From 2022 to 2027, TOPS will accelerate the engagement of the scientific community in open science practices through events and activities aimed at:

Lowering barriers to entry for historically excluded communities
Better understanding how people use NASA data and code to take advantage of our big data collections
Increasing opportunities for collaboration while promoting scientific innovation, transparency, and reproducibility….”