Access to digital knowledge and management of research data from publicly funded science are seen as essential challenges for research and knowledge transfer in Germany. Over the past years, the Rat für Informationssinfrastrukturen (RfII) has initiated discussions on a national infrastructure for research data (Nationale Forschungsdaten-Infrastruktur, NFDI) and has recommended to establish such an infrastructure. The Gemeinsame Wissenschaftskonferenz (GWK) decided to fund the development of an NFDI with up to 90 million € per year for the next ten years (https://www.gwk-bonn.de/fileadmin/Redaktion/Dokumente/Papers/NFDI.pdf).
The NFDI is intended to serve all disciplines of the entire research landscape in Germany. Its purpose is to support scientists in efficiently managing their research data and to ensure that research data becomes interoperable and re-usable, in line with international standards and initiatives (e.g., the FAIR principles, the European Open Science Cloud EOSC). The NFDI aims to build on and connect existing resources according to a comprehensive concept for research data management that is sustainable and competitive in the international context.
The development of the NFDI will be organized along the different scientific fields, through consortia of data producers, data users and infrastructure providers that represent the respective scientific communities. The wide scope and interdisciplinary nature of neuroscientific research, together with the important role of neuroscience in Germany, calls for an NFDI consortium dedicated to neuroscience.
Heterogeneity, complexity and growing volumes of neuroscience data, paired with the demand to re-use valuable experimental data, make it increasingly important to provide infrastructural support for the data management tasks of neuroscientists. This may include very diverse aspects, for example, tools to facilitate the acquisition of experimental data and metadata, standards to improve interoperability of data from multiple sources, services to store and organize the provenance of data acquisition and processing workflows, or enhancing accessibility and interoperability of databases, repositories, and other resources. Some solutions have started to emerge but need to be integrated and further developed to achieve a coherent and efficient data management framework for neuroscientists. This process will have to consider all subdomains of neuroscience and all methodological approaches with their requirements on research data, addressing the specific needs of the researchers.
The NFDI Neuroscience consortium works to build a community to develop the conceptual and practical basis of a research data management infrastructure for the neurosciences. The consortium is supported by the Neurowissenschaftliche Gesellschaft (NWG) and the Bernstein Network for Computational Neuroscience.
Neuroscientists require practical solutions in the form of robust methods, tools, and services, that enable collecting and efficiently managing data and metadata during the everyday data workflows in the laboratory. Therefore the goal is to build a community-centered process where scientists benefit from and contribute to improving the research data management infrastructure. NFDI-Neuro aims to help scientists addressing their needs with existing solutions and to trigger and coordinate the development of new solutions where necessary. Community involvement on different levels will be essential for this process - from the contributions of individual researchers to the representation of large collaborative research projects and institutions. Thus we highly appreciate your participation. Please contact us if you have research data management needs, solutions to share, or any further questions.
Program: TBA - please check back here for updates