The Biological and Chemical Oceanography Data Management Office (BCO-DMO; was formed in late 2006 with funding from the Biological and Chemical Oceanography Sections of the National Science Foundation (NSF) Geosciences Directorate Division of Ocean Sciences (OCE), with additional funding contributed in 2010 to support management of research data from the NSF Office of Polar Programs (PLR) Antarctic Organisms & Ecosystems Program (ANT). Efforts at BCO-DMO focus on comprehensive data management activities that span the full research data life cycle from “proposal through preservation”.

The office is located at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and staff members come from the biology and chemistry departments and the Computer and Information Systems group at WHOI.

The essential data management activities include: (1) working with research project investigators to establish a comprehensive data management plan; (2) registering research projects in the BCO-DMO catalog; (3) stewardship of project data and supporting documentation; (4) providing data access systems that support data discovery, access, display, assessment, integration, and export of data resources; (5) submitting final data sets to the appropriate long-term data archive and (6) formal publication of data sets to provide citable references (Digital Object Identifiers) for use in peer-reviewed literature and to encourage proper citation and attribution of data sets in the future.  When combined, these elements comprise the full spectrum of the data life cycle; enabling discovery and accurate re-use and ensuring long-term permanent archive of the data.

Interesting project:

BCO-DMO has several projects that align well with active ESIP collaboration areas. We recently transitioned our Web site to drupal. With partners at RPI/TWC, we have developed a practical ontology to describe marine biogeochemical research data managed by the office, and the ontology is part of our semantically enabled search interface. We are funded through the NSF EarthCube initiative to explore Linked Data as a way to share information with complementary marine data repositories. We are active in several global initiatives to improve publication and citation of research data and we follow and promote the ESIP guidelines for data publication. Members of the office are active in many communities-of-practice both nationally and internationally. Several new focus areas are: publication of our dataset descriptions as ISO-compliant metadata; exploring ways to automate our metadata quality control process; and fostering stronger connections between NSF EarthCube and ESIP.

Why we participate in ESIP:

BCO-DMO benefits from membership in ESIP through exposure to new and cutting edge technologies, best practices, and the experts working at the intersection of domain sciences and information technologies.  Opportunities to network with experts have led to productive, collaborative, informatics projects including the use of semantics, Linked Data and drupal for managing and improving access to scientific research data. ESIP provides an easy (and fun!) way to collaborate with others doing similar work. The annual meetings are designed to maximize opportunities to meet with other members, and the regularly scheduled interim, virtual meetings help to keep the discussions active.

ESIP Type:  Type I
Joined:  2013
ESIP Voting Rep:  Cyndy Chandler