Year in Review 2023

I gave over 40 talks in 2023 - this included presentations, workshops, and panels. These ranged from a workshop of only 4 people to a keynote to over 8000 people. Not including the keynote, I likely talked to over 3600 people. It was a busy year.

Fortunately, it was one of four talks that I gave at most events: NASA and Open Source Software, SDP-41a: NASA’s scientific information policy, NASA’s Open Source Science Initiative, and Open Science 101: Ethos of Open Science. These talks have overlapping material and I was significantly helped by the fantastic team that helped put together the talks.

These talks were a mix of virtual and in-person, but I did make 12 trips as part of this year to give talks in person. By the end of the year, I was exhausted. Personal circumstances cut my second to last trip short, changing it from in-person to virtual. And it was only on the last trip that I finally, after four years, caught Covid. I definitely ran out of steam toward the end of the year, which is why I’m taking an extended break from giving in-person talks to start 2024.

It was A Year of Open Science, and one of our goals was to engage with people to help spread the word about the new scientific information policy and the ideas around Open Science. In terms of engagement, I think this was incredibly successful. In terms of advancing open science adoption, I think it will take some time to determine the outcome.

The most enjoyable events were where I was closely interacting with the data science community in Earth and Space Science. The Planetary Data Workshop, ADASS, and .Astronomy were all very worthwhile events to attend where I learned a lot and I think I had the most beneficial engagements with the communities.

The most rewarding events were the ones where I was engaged with diverse communities. It was great to share the work that we are doing, but it was with these groups that I really came away with new ideas. For example, participating on a panel on data sovereignty led me to this Down to Earth podcast that has a great interview with Dr. Sativa Cruz on the subject.

I think the most productive events were the visits to the NASA centers and with research groups. I heard directly about the issues that are affecting them and to better understand areas to focus on in the future.

We also organized two events. The NASA-CERN Open Science Summit was a great discussion with other policymakers and leaders in open science, and I’m looking forward to some of the next steps to develop from the meeting. The FAIR for NASA Data workshop was a great way to get together the different NASA data repositories on some of the issues that were challenging them. At the same time, these meetings were significant efforts to put together and for those that attended. The general feedback was very positive from these meetings, but quantitative assessments of meetings are difficult.

I have a split opinion on general meetings. These are a great opportunity to meet and network with those who are there, but I’m not sure if it is more productive than virtual townhalls for disseminating information.

I also much more enjoy discussions and questions rather than presentations. I like to talk about what the audience is interested in and also engage with them. While it wasn’t exactly as planned, the four person workshop was one of my favorite due to the great discussions that we had with it. This also falls back on my enjoyment of teaching - which is something that I miss in my current position.

Written on December 31, 2023