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Data-intensive Research Policy In Ireland. A brief overview By J.-C. Desplat < >. The Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC). Set up in 2005 from a “green field” First ever National HPC Centre in RoI Mission includes: National HPC Service

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data intensive research policy in ireland

Data-intensive Research PolicyIn Ireland

A brief overviewBy J.-C. Desplat <>

the irish centre for high end computing ichec
The Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC)
  • Set up in 2005 from a “green field”
  • First ever National HPC Centre in RoI
  • Mission includes:
    • National HPC Service
    • Cornerstone of Irish e-Infrastructure
    • Economic development through industry engagement
  • Base Centre funding from SFI/HEA
    • Linked to six government depts
data intensive research
Data intensive research
  • Legislative Framework
    • Data Protection Commissioner
  • Policies and guidelines
    • from funding agencies, e.g.
      • Science Foundation Ireland, Higher Education Authority,Environmental Protection Agency, Health Research Board, Irish Research Council
    • from advisory bodies, e.g.
      • Health Information & Quality Authority
  • International best practice
    • “Open Data” out of scope
ecosystem topical areas
Ecosystem & topical areas

A – Future networks & comms

B – Data analytics, mgt, security, …

C – Digital platforms, contents & apps

D – Connected health & indep. living

E– Medical diagnostics

F– Diagnostics

G– Therapeutics

H– Food for health

I– Sustainable food production, …

J– Marine renewable energy

K– Smart grids & smart cities

L– Manufacturing competitiveness

M– Processing tech & novel materials

N– Innovation in services, …

  • National Research Prioritisation Exercise
cs1 humanities soc sciences
CS1 – Humanities Soc. Sciences
  • Initiatives to develop national digital repository for the humanities and social sciences
cs1 humanities soc sciences1
CS1 – Humanities Soc. Sciences
  • Initiatives to develop national digital repository for the humanities and social sciences
  • Project-based funding
    • 2007-12: Digital Humanities Observatory (DHO)
    • 2011-15: Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI)
  • Sustainability vs. data curation & preservation?
    • Staff turn around (loss of expertise)
    • Running costs for service past end of grant?
    • Lack of strategy for sustainability past end of grant
cs1 humanities soc sciences2
CS1 – Humanities Soc. Sciences
  • Constraints determine model
    • Institutions “hold on” source data
    • Metadata aggregation platform at national level though project funded initiatives
    • Persistent service available at European level
      • Europeana and DARIAH (ESFRI)
      • Interoperability (ESE/DRIM)
      • Streamlining integration of Irishhumanities data into a EU context
  • Sustainable National e-Infrastructureand topical centres required
cs2 cmip5 climate sciences
CS2: CMIP5 (Climate Sciences)
  • Impact of national policies on participation in international initiatives
  • CMIP5: Model Intercomparison Project 5 for the UN IPCC report
  • ICHEC a partner in the EC-Earth climate model. Handles data mgt
  • Each model uploads core experiment results to main centres
  • Other model results kept “locally”
    • model centre (e.g. ICHEC) runs an “Earth System Grid” (ESG) data node
    • portals retrieve this data via ESG data node


B. Lawrence, 2009

cs2 cmip5 climate sciences1
CS2: CMIP5 (Climate Sciences)
  • Climate data mgt at Irish ESG node
    • Processed 1-10M files(>3PB) from 14 EU partners
    • Workflow for optimised publishing and analysis
  • From guidelines and best practice
    • NetCDF/OpenDAP, CMOR, CF conventions for climate data, etc.
    • INSPIRE directive (2007/2/EC)
  • Main challenge
    • Sustainability of underpinning e-Infrastructure
      • Self-funded… no medium/long term commitment
cs3 clinical research
CS3 – Clinical Research
  • Irish Clinical Research Infrastructure Network (ICRIN)
    • Founded by Molecular Medicine Ireland
      • to engage with the constituent teaching hospitals to develop a national clinical research infrastructure,
      • to harmonise clinical research processes, to connect with European networks,
      • to develop education and training programmes and to support investigators in conducting multi-centre clinical studies.
cs3 clinical research1
CS3 – Clinical Research
  • Leverages on investments by the HRB and the Wellcome Trust in clinical research facilities
  • Promotes and facilitates engagement of the clinical research community in Ireland
    • to a common strategy,
    • adopting harmonised processes and practices,
    • and fostering education and training in all aspects of clinical research, particularly multi-centrestudies.
  • ICRIN, as the Irish member of the European Clinical Research Infrastructure Network.
closing thoughts
Closing thoughts
  • Personal views:
    • International framework (e.g., INSPIRE) preferable
    • Policies need to support sustainability of underpinning e-Infrastructure
    • Importance of Platform Science & Technology still not understood
    • Policies need to incentivise/require sharing of data
    • Changing “Business as usual” mentality
    • Urgent need to develop creation of a new breed of “Data Scientists” and include generic skills in STEM curriculum