ings with senior science officials and data managers from both countries to discuss various data management and policy issues.3 Following these two initial meetings of the U.S. and Chinese CODATA committees, the Chinese side was augmented by other experts from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and MoST who are leaders of the Scientific Data Sharing Program. The USNC for CODATA hosted a delegation of these Chinese data policy experts in the summer of 2002.
The fourth of these bilateral meetings of data experts was held in Beijing in October 2003. Focused on scientific resources sharing policy, that meeting provided some of the advance groundwork for the June 2004 workshop that is the topic of this report. It also re-confirmed the commitment of the Chinese science policy community to promoting greater openness regarding Chinese scientific data and identified the priority areas for additional focus.
The effective long-term preservation of and open access to digital scientific resources in all countries increases in importance as an essential component of the global public research infrastructure, which can now be integrated through the Internet. The challenges in storing and maintaining access to these growing collections of data and information are substantial, even in economically more developed countries. Moreover, although many of the challenges that require sustainable solutions are the same for digital data and information across all disciplines, others are distinct or unique to certain disciplines or types of information. And while all solutions are context dependent, some may be based on extending or emulating existing successful models, and others may require and benefit from entirely new approaches.
China faces substantial hurdles in this regard. Although many of its data resources and especially journal literature still reside in paper formats, China already has significant digital information preservation and access requirements that in many cases are not being successfully addressed. Factual databases and journals can provide an important research and economic tool for China—just as they do in more economically developed countries—for capacity building in science and education, for supporting sustainable development of commerce and industry, and for promoting good governance. Resolving the many difficulties in preserving and making
For additional information, see http://www7.nationalacademies.org/usnc-codata/China_US_Data_Seminars.html.