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A new paradigm for geosciences information management

Description: Over the past two decades, geoscientists have been increasingly engaged in providing answers to complex environmental problems with significant societal, political, and economic consequences. Today, these scientists have to perform under increasingly greater visibility to stakeholders and the general public. Their activities are much more scrutinized with regards to economic pressure, litigation support and regulatory compliance than in the past. Their current work is built on decades of past work and in many cases will continue for decades to come. Stakeholders are increasingly evaluating raw data rather than just examining summaries in final reports. They also need assurance that proper data control and data quality procedures were followed. Geoscientists are now faced with a new paradigm, i.e. with the challenge of cost effectively collecting, managing, analyzing, and synthesizing enormous volumes of multidisciplinary and complex information. In addition, these data must be processed and disseminated in a way that allows the public to make informed and rational assessments on decisions that are proposed or have been made. The new paradigm is clear - client and stakeholder needs must be better met, and the systems used to store and generate data must meet these needs. This paper addresses the challenges and the implications of this new paradigm on geosciences information management in the 21st Century. It concludes with a case study for a successful implementation of the new paradigm in an environmental restoration project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) that is operated by the Department of Energy (DOE). LANL is upgrading and reengineering its data and business processes to better address client, user and stakeholder issues regarding data accessibility, control and quality.
Date: January 1, 2002
Creator: Bolivar, Stephen L.; Nasser, K. (Khalil); Dorries, A. M. (Alison M.) & Canepa, Julie Ann
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department