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Scholarly Societies in the context of Open Science: Getting a FAIR start

Monday, October 21, 2019
Helsinki, Finland. Colocated with the RDA 14th Plenary Meeting

Scholarly societies have a profound history of supporting the research process and researchers, acting as major disseminators of academic work of all kinds, and engaging in subject-specific advocacy activities. Many Societies are implementing ways of going beyond supporting open access publishing to underpinning open science, by expressing support also for FAIR data, finding new ways forward for a more diverse range of outputs, as well as crucially being engaged in increasing the broader impact of their research for the wider public good and thus also gaining greater public visibility.

To help support the broader Open Science agenda, OpenAIRE and the ALLEA E-Humanities working group, chaired by DRI's director, are partnering to facilitate a half-day workshop focussing on Learned and Scholarly Societies, collocated with the Research Data Alliance 14th plenary in Finland. The workshop addresses Open Science implementation issues, with a particular focus on the development of FAIR data practices. Attention will be paid to how Open Science benefits researchers and research practice, while also touching on wider societal impact by addressing big societal challenges of the day through Citizen Science.


WHEN:  October 21st, 12:30 - 18:00
WHERE: Helsinki, Finland, collocated with the 14th RDA Plenary, meeting room TBC

Draft programme

12.30 - 13.15   Arrival and lunch
13.15 - 13.40   Lea Ryynänen-Karjalainen, Executive Director of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies.
                        The national policy context in Finland
13.40 - 14.05   Natalie Harrower, Director, Digital Repository of Ireland, Royal Irish Academy & Chair of the ALLEA E-Humanities Working Group
                        Recommendations for Sustainable and FAIR Data Sharing in the Humanities
14.05 - 14.30   Mike Mertens, Scientific Manager, OpenAIRE Advance
                        OpenAIRE and FAIR Data for scholars: technical, policy and training facets
14.30 - 14.50   Coffee Break
14.50 - 15.10   Open Science - The view from the ground (speaker TBC)
15.10 - 16.00   Breakout discussion
16.00 - 16.40   Breakout group reportage (10 Mins each max)
16.40 - 17.00   Comfort break/Water/Juice
17.00 - 17.50   Speaker and Invited Expert Panel
17.50 - 18.00   Summary of main points and actions, thanks and farewell


  • FAIR and the research data lifecycle - discipline-specific perspectives and how scholarly societies are addressing the various requirements 
  • Archiving research data: Supporting researchers in managing their research data and software associated to the publication effectively, recommendations for storage and sharing appropriately and how to link to Data Management Plans, using ZENODO and other research data repositories for broad and reliable dissemination of research using PIDs, etc.. How to curate your information.
  • Funding new approaches to data: How can research funding models adequately compensate new ways of making data available under FAIR, or novel approaches to publishing data on the part of researchers?
  • Metrics and FAIR: Bringing FAIR into how researchers track research publications and their usage over time and how they link this to information such as research grants and institutional affiliation. 
  • Open science: What national policies are needed to make the vision more of a reality for scholars, and how can researcher communities (learned societies, Clusters) feed into both national policy more effectively while gaining direct information, training and advice at the European level? (With case studies from the ALLEA e-Humanities Working Group and the OpenAIRE National Open Access Desks).
  • Social impact via Citizen Science engagement: Encouraging the uptake and re-use of data by Citizen Scientists through researcher outreach and appropriate infrastructure.

This will involve dedicated time to addressing the key themes on the part of invited speakers; structured breakout discussions with case studies from the two sponsoring organisations, and coalescing the input from attendees around giving them the information laid out under ‘Impact of the Event’, below, and sharing knowledge from researchers on their experience or needs in tailoring FAIR principles to scholarly disciplines.


TAKEAWAYS for participants

How disciplinary communities can tailor the FAIR principles to their area (with an example from the ALLEA E-Humanities consultation)
How OpenAIRE supports Scholarly societies in making their data and research practices FAIRer
FAIR success stories from scholarly societies and OpenAIRE
How do scholarly societies fit in the broader Open science context and the EOSC, with reference to broader societal visibility of research

OpenAIRE-Advance addresses key aspects and challenges of the currently transforming scholarly communication landscape in terms of quality assurance, communication of scientific outputs with a focus on EOSC developments. It is based on the OpenAIRE network that supports, accelerates and monitors the implementation of Open Science policies, including Open Access to publications and research data. The project lays the groundwork for OpenAIRE to play a central role in the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), enabling greater integration with Research Infrastructures and developing a catalogue of services that are inherently interoperable with and complementary to other EOSC services. It will work in close collaboration with the EOSC-Hub. 

The ALLEA E-Humanities working group, composed of experts from across European academies, is committed to identifying and raising awareness for priorities and concerns of the humanities, with particular attention to current and emerging developments in digital practice. Over the spring and summer of 2019, the group held an open consultation process to develop recommendations for FAIR data sharing, titled “Sustainable and FAIR data sharing in the humanities”. The outcome of the consultation will be presented during this workshop as an example of how the specifics of FAIR implementation needs to be driven by disciplines and the scholarly communities that represent them. The Recommendations are mapped to the key phases of the data management lifecycle. They provide general as well as domain-specific guidance on implementing the FAIR principles and adopting Open Science approaches to managing humanities research data.