Chief Technology Strategist
University of California San Diego
Chief Technology Officer
Center for Open Science
Like many universities, the University of California San Diego (UCSD) Library wanted to build a research data catalog to provide discoverability and access to data sets created or hosted on campus, but not housed in the Library’s own repository. They were going to (1) find and curate these datasets; (2) build a database to host the metadata about these datasets; (3) expose the database to the web via API; and (4) create a front-end dashboard atop said API. Enter SHARE. SHARE is creating a free, open data set of research activity across the research life cycle, data sets included, and a set of tools to access this data, including an API. With a dataset of over 17.8 million entries, a database, and a flexible API, the SHARE team has built several interfaces as simple, client-side front-ends. Thus, rather than having to complete the four steps previously mentioned, UCSD Library staff had only to do the first step and contribute metadata to the SHARE data set. UCSD’s partner, the Center for Open Science, created a modular and themeable open source front-end to the API, database, and data already provided by SHARE. Other organizations can easily adapt this open source code to create their own dashboards. This presentation will include a demonstration of the dashboard, a description of the process, and discussion of challenges and tips for other institutions that want to do something similar.