PF Statement

From Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)

Peter Fox

I consider being nominated for the role of President of ESIP a natural evolution of my involvement in this very important organization. When the Federation was formed I was associated via the NASA-funded DODS project although it would mid-2000's before I attended my first meeting. After that I was pretty much hooked. Since then I have led the Semantic Web cluster since its inception, served two successive terms as the type-II representative, i.e. being on the ESIP executive committee and the Foundation Board. I then moved to (and am presently serving successive terms on) the ESIP Finance Committee (as the type-II rep.). And, I've attended every bi-annual meeting since 2007. I would be honored to serve as President and work openly, inclusively and cooperatively with all ESIP members and participants.

I have extensive experience in, and knowledge of, socio-technical systems/ virtual organizations and served in capacities as both President/CEO of OPeNDAP (~4.5 years) and as a technical lead and strategic advisor for many "data" activities other than my own, over my career. In the past these have ranged from: technical advisory board member for OPeNDAP in its early years (1996-2003); the first ICSU Strategic Committee on Information and Data and the followon Strategic Coordinating Committee on Information and Data that determined the fate of the World Data Centers and Services, and gave guidance to CODATA; a founding member and past chair/liaison of the AGU and EGU Earth and Space Science Informatics sections; as a User Working Group member for the NASA DAAC Socio-Economic Data Applications Center; chair of the Virtual Observatory Working Group for the electronic Geophysical Year; and long-term member of NASA's Earth Science Data System Working Group. I am presently a member of NOAA's Data Archiving and Access Requirements Working Group (under the NOAA Science Advisory Board); consultant to USGS on Data Release; convener of the NSF Geodata inter-agency workshop activity for Earthcube; advisory board member for the NSF projects on Digital Antiquity, CyberSHare - a CREST-funded Center of Excellence, and the Open Geospatial Consortium Interoperability Institute. I have served two terms as chair of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics's Union Commission on Data and Information. I have also recently been elected to the Research Data Alliance Technical Advisory Board (TAB). This collective experience and sets of affiliations will provide opportunities for the advancement of both what the Federation stands for and what it does.

I bring a strong and steady, well-considered, and integrated global view of research data in organizations while balancing technical, socio-cultural and organizational realities.


Peter Fox is Tetherless World Constellation Chair and Professor of Earth and Environmental Science and Computer Science and Director of the Information Technology and Web Science Program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He holds B.Sc. (Hons) and Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from Monash University. He spent 17 years at the High Altitude Observatory of the National Center for Atmospheric Research as Chief Computational Scientist. Fox's research specializes in the fields of solar and solar-terrestrial physics, computational and computer science, information technology, and distributed semantic data frameworks. This research utilizes state-of-the-art modeling techniques, internet-based technologies, including the semantic web, and applies them to large-scale distributed scientific repositories addressing the full life-cycle of data and information within specific science and engineering disciplines as well as among disciplines. Fox is currently PI for the Integrated Ecosystem Assessment, the Deep Carbon Observatory Data Science, Global Change Information System, and the GeoData projects and co-PI on 5 others. Fox has spent over 28 years bridging science and distributed data and information systems to support community activities utilizing use case driven design. Fox leads working groups for the semantic web cluster of the Earth Science Information Partners, is chair of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics Union Commission on Data and Information and past chair of the AGU Special Focus Group on Earth and Space Science Informatics, is an associate editor for the Earth Science Informatics journal, is a member of the editorial boards for Computers in Geosciences, Geoscience Data Journal and Nature's Scientific Data Journal. Fox served on the International Council for Science's Strategic Coordinating Committee for Information and Data. Fox was awarded the 2012 Martha Maiden Lifetime Achievement Award for service to the Earth Science Information community, and the 2012 European Geoscience Union, Ian McHarg/ Earth and Space Science Informatics Medal.