Understanding Agents of Scientific Change: The Case of Embryo Research

Project: Research project

Project Details


Understanding Agents of Scientific Change: The Case of Embryo Research Understanding Agents of Scientific Change: The Case of Embryo Research Understanding Agents of Scientific Change: the Case of Embryo Research The Embryo Project leadership is exploring scholarship related to embryo research and also developing new ways of working, and there is an opportunity to build on work in progress to go much further with the technical side of the project. This supplemental support is being sought to enhance the existing project, which will allow testing of implementation models with historical scholarship that will inform understanding of agents of change in embryo research, and at the same time build the foundations for making that technology available off the shelf for other scholarly projects related to science and society. The work covered by the proposed supplementary funding will lead to well defined outcomes and deliverables that not only greatly enhance the original Embryo Project proposal by creating a digital infrastructure to enhance discoveries related to agents of scientific change by orders of magnitude, but also pave the way to a community wide digital framework for studies in the area of science and society. More specifically, this supplement will allow: 1. Development of a test ontology for the EP that will become the nucleus of a more general ontology for science and society related projects. Such an ontology is the sine qua non of all further developments in digital infrastructure in that area. 2. Development of search algorithms and queries based on this ontology that will allow retrieval of information related to agents of scientific change from a wide variety of existing digital repositories as well as (together with the ontology) guiding the development of new types of digital repositories in that area. 3. Proposing a community wide framework for a digital infrastructure based on Fedora that will take into account the needs of other projects and set standards of interoperability and shared applications. This will thus not only contribute to the sustainability of such projects but also contribute to the outreach component of the EP as it will enable different user groups to both contribute to and make use of the findings of the EP. 4. Setting the foundation for future funded projects in the area of digital infrastructure for science and society studies. This will involve working out ways as the next phase of the project that the Science and Society research community at large can make the best use of limited resources. To implement the larger vision will require additional support, possibly from the National Endowment for the Humanities (where program officers have expressed interest), private foundations, or through NSF infrastructure programs. For any of these possibilities, however, a successful completion of a defined test case as a proof of principle is crucial. It is working out the test case(s), as well as methods for making extending the knowledge acquired beyond that this supplement will make possible. Understanding Agents of Scientific Change: the Case of Embryo Research This supplement will extend the foundational work of the original grant and the first supplement in order further to enhance informatics capabilities and support, to extend ways of working, and most importantly with this supplement to carry the potentially transformative discoveries of the original Embryo Project (EP) to other projects and the larger community. The goal is to begin to develop shared protocols and ways of working that will enable greater inter-operability and accessibility across projects. The objectives of this supplement are to: Part I: solidify the EP databases and Fedora-based software development. This will have significant broader impacts by allowing integration within the larger network of distributed databases growing out of a range of projects related to studies of Science and Society. Part II: bring together leaders of at least a half dozen major projects to develop shared approaches to produce a consensus document to be made available to the larger Science and Society research community, to outline best practices for digital projects as well as to begin the work of integrating different tools developed by individual projects. Part III: build a virtual mirror server and provide the necessary IT support to make it work for the network of project leaders across digital hps. This will involve programming specifically, in the following areas: further developing ontologies and Science and Society specific data-mining technologies (especially by refining the oboannotator framework to different time periods and projects); and developing a set of webapplications, such as visualization and analysis tools that allow for more sophisticated queries and hypothesis testing on data and relationships extracted from a variety of corpi. This work will be done as a subcontract through the Marine Biological Laboratory, directed through the MBL-WHOI Library and as part of the developing Scientific Informatics Center. CISE IIS Special Project Supplement: Understanding Agents of Scientific Change: the Case of Embryo Research The Undergraduate Student Samuel Philbrick will continue his pre-medical studies and fulfill the requirements of the National Consortium for MASINT Research NCRM SCholars Program. The student meets the criteria for the NCRM program and has been selected to be a scholar. Per the guidelines, I am submitting this supplement for my current NSF award and that the period of performance has not expired.
Effective start/end date8/1/0712/31/11


  • National Science Foundation (NSF): $820,339.00


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