Data at Risk Project

legacy product (n) -­ Unreleased data, software, physical samples and publications developed by USGS projects completed prior to 2011 that are stored in an old/obsolete format, computer system or facility and are, therefore, unavailable to the scientific community and greater public.

risk (v) - exposure to danger, harm, or loss.

The USGS Community for Data Integration's Data at Risk (DaR) project was established to create an inventory of USGS legacy data, develop methods to evaluate and prioritize legacy data inventories, and inventory and preserve legacy data to study the costs and considerations of legacy data recovery projects. There are two significant groups that continuously move the DaR project work forward.

DaR Working Group and Slack Community

The DaR Working Group is part of the USGS Fundamental Science Practices Advisory Committee (FSPAC) and is responsible for overseeing the broad DaR Project objectives, communicating significant updates across science centers, regions and missions, and providing policy and best practices recommendations to the FSPAC. The DaR Working Group also facilitates broad discussions of USGS legacy data preservation via its Data at Risk Slack community, which is open to all USGS employees registered using their USGS email address. 

DaR Preservation Team

The DaR Preservation Team is headquartered at the USGS Fort Collins Science Center and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the DaR project. The primary objectives of the preservation team are:

  • Promote USGS legacy data inventory efforts and maintain the USGS legacy data inventory through LDIRS .
  • Refine and improve the evaluation and prioritization workflows and algorithms.
  • Inventory and preserve USGS legacy data as case studies of the cost and considerations of legacy data preservation.

The DaR Preservation team is made up of the 2 principal investigators who oversee the execution of the data management plans; the data steward who coordinates all preseravation tasks from acquisition through dissemination; and the data scientist who works with the data steward to develop geospatial data products and develop code-based data processing, QA/QC and preservation solutions. The Data Preservation Team maintains all project documents, in particular, the data management plans, CSDGM metadata, and Sciencebase items, all of which are reviewed and updated at the beginning of each month to ensure they are kept up to date. All inventory and preservation projects are documented and published as "Case Studies" via LDIRS to help inform others in USGS about the costs and considerations of preserving legacy data. 

Learn More About the DaR Project