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Open-source Science: The NASA Earth Science Perspective

Open-source science is making the scientific process more inclusive, diverse, and equitable. Read more about this evolving scientific paradigm -- and what it means for your use of NASA Earth science data.

Kevin Murphy
Chief Science Data Officer, NASA's Science Mission Directorate
Program Manager, NASA's Earth Science Data Systems Program

(Reprinted with permission from NASA's The Earth Observer, 33(5), Sept/Oct 2021)

A system based on open science aims to make the scientific process as transparent (or open) as possible by making all elements of a claimed discovery readily accessible, which enables results to be repeated and validated. Out of this open science concept, an evolving scientific paradigm called open-source science is emerging.

Open-source science builds on concepts from the open-source software revolution that expanded participation in code development and applies these concepts to the scientific process to accelerate discovery by conducting science openly from project initiation through implementation. The result is the inclusion of a wider, more diverse community in the scientific process as close to the start of research activities as possible. This increased level of commitment to conducting the full research process openly and without restriction enhances transparency and reproducibility, which engenders trust in the scientific process. It also represents a cultural shift that encourages collaboration and participation among practitioners of diverse backgrounds, including scientific discipline, gender, ethnicity, and expertise. Open-source science is more equitable science.

Read Open-Source Science: The NASA Earth Science Perspective (PDF).

Page Last Updated: Nov 4, 2021 at 10:12 AM EDT