Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 20 Issue 03

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Volume 20, No. 3
Pages 124 - 125

WORKSHOP REPORT • Building a Global Data Network for Studies of Earth Processes at the World's Plate Boundaries

Suzanne Carbotte Kerstin Lehnert
First Paragraph

The international geoscience community is actively engaged in scientifically aligned goals through the InterRidge and InterMARGINS programs, both broad multi-disciplinary initiatives focused on understanding the fundamental processes of crustal formation, modification, and destruction at Earth’s plate boundaries. Ridge2000 and MARGINS, US-funded component programs, support focused investigations in a few geographic locations, many of which fall within national boundaries of international partners. At present, there are no formal agreements within these programs for data sharing with foreign partners, and data exchange occurs primarily by informal agreements between scientists directly involved in specific projects. However, significant benefits to these marine-terrestrial geoscience research efforts could be achieved internationally if data collections maintained as national efforts could be better linked and if broader access were initiated. Rapid advances have occurred over the past decade in information technology for scientific research, providing new access to data from distributed resources and new tools for visualization and integration. These technologies will enable independent globally distributed sites to share, link, and integrate their data holdings and services while maintaining full ownership and credit for these holdings. Along with these advances in information technology has come the growth of digital data collections for a broad suite of data across the sciences. These advances hold great promise for the solid earth sciences, an inherently multinational and multidisciplinary field, which involves the collection of typically unique data sets during oceanic and terrestrial expeditions and subsequent laboratory work conducted by research institutions around the globe.


Carbotte, S., and K. Lehnert. 2007. Workshop report: Building a global data network for studies of Earth processes at the world’s plate boundaries. Oceanography 20(3):124–125, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2007.38.