New Decade’s Resolution for Data: What we can do for a planetary-scale microbial observing system

The UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development has just started, offering us the opportunity and framework within which to elevate and operationalise how we investigate the living ocean. Biology is a data-intensive field now, and we will need better data management for better data science. From my background in omics and microbial ecology, systems like the INSDC, with standards for sequence data, stable identifiers and routine data exchange across continents, come close to being a gold standard for data and information resources. However, we are falling behind when it comes to our handling of metadata and interoperability with data systems from other disciplines. Multiple other disciplines in ocean observing are coming together to create integrated solutions. To connect to those efforts and to use the momentum offered to the best of our abilities, we will have to get our data into shape! In this talk we’ll be exploring the challenges and progress in the endeavour of enhancing the global omics data system for planetary-scale science and observation.

Raissa's research in microbial ecology applies bioinformatics and data science to investigate the dynamics of the living ocean. She is leading a collaborative effort between ocean observatories to prototype a network of interoperable 'omic biodiversity data exchange and analysis. She applies ontologies and digital exchange standards to build a sustainable, and extendable foundation for this work. Raissa's aim is to bridge stakeholders within and beyond academia, advancing the readiness of global 'omic and microbial observation networks, and addressing the overarching scientific mission to investigate the state of the planetary-scale marine microbiome.