Endangered Data Week

Jason Heppler

This post comes to us from Jason Heppler, the digital engagement librarian at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, a historian of urban environmental politics and policy, authorteachereditor at BlogWestpublic speakeropen data enthusiastcycling advocate, and writer. The article was originally published in Medium.



Endangered Data Week

In 2017, Brandon Locke voiced an idea on Twitter: we needed an event to raise awareness, like Banned Books Week, to threats to publicly available data. Those threats were widespread and various: from outright censorship to benign neglect. We were inspired by the work of others, namely DataRefuge, the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative, and the work they were doing to secure environmental and climate data from an incoming presidential administration that does not believe in climate change. Joining with the Digital Library Federation, volunteers from around the world helped make EDW more successful that I could have imagined. With the support of our other partners — the Mozilla Science LabCLIRDataRefuge — we helped showcase events all around the world focused on threats to public data.

We’re at it again this year. Next week, February 26 to March 2, is Endangered Data Week. And the concerns of last year are no less present this time around.

This year’s events once again cover a range of approaches, themes, and skills training. We currently have forty-two events scheduled so far across the U.S. and Canada, where attendees are learning:

Adding to our excitement this year is an announcement: Sarah Melton, Rachel Mattson, Brandon, and I are part of Mozilla’s fifth round of Open Leaders. Endangered Data Week’s curriculum development will be part of the Global Sprint May 10–11, 2018, as well. With Mozilla, we’ll be building out more instruction resources under the aegis of Endangered Data Week to promote data literacy, civic engagement, and a culture of data consciousness.

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