Wednesday, July 28, 2010

White paper 15 - Governance

The governance white paper is now available for discussion. When making posts please remember to follow the house rules. Please also take time to read the full pdf before commenting and where possible refer to one or more of section titles, pages and line numbers to make it easy to cross-reference your comment with the document.

The recommendations are reproduced below:
1. Efforts should be made to capitalise on the efforts of existing and ongoing projects

2. A Steering Committee should be established, to be composed of the chairs of the various working level groups established to conduct the various elements of the work, to include experts from outside the climate science community, and a number of ‘project evangelists’.

3. The steering committee should have designated authority to make reasonable choices to allow for flexibility and efficacy.

4. The steering committee should annually report to stakeholder bodies on the basis of a single annual report.

5. A small number (3-5) of ‘project evangelists’ should be identified and mandated to proactively engage with external stakeholders and facilitate effective two-way communications

6. Findings and conclusions should be reported in the scientific literature and at relevant conferences


  1. Posted on behalf of:
    Hitomi Saito (Ms.)
    Climate Prediction Division
    Global Environment and Marine Department
    Japan Meteorological Agency

    I consider it is necessary to provide a road map for the whole project. As shown in the WP3 (lines 365-369), our target should be to create a version 1 of the databank from currently existing datasets. I think we should also set a goal for the period of its publication.

  2. I'd like to see some discussion of the reward structure for the people who will curate this databank. Most of the scientific community is judged and rewarded on the basis of publications in scientific journals. Those who specialize in the creation of software or data products invest considerable time and effort, usually at the expense of their publication record. Which explains one of the primary drivers for not being so open when it comes to sharing data and code - the owners often want to protect their investment long enough to build a substantial publication record, which can take years or even decades. Which means the community needs to examine the reward structure more carefully, and consider whether it might be necessary to include data policies that allow some subsets to be embargoed by their contributors temporarily, while publications are prepared (the latter might not be necessary for this type of data, but I'd like to at least table it for discussion).

  3. Please involve those people and groups outside of your 'comfort zone' of national met-office type groups. I am thinking of people like Anthony Watts and Roger Pielke, and no doubt, others.

    It would also have helped if you'd directly involved such people in this effort from the start, and allowed more time for publicity and feedback. Still, better late than never. Please contact Anthony, roger et al today.


  4. I believe many other related activities (projects) should cooperate. I wonder if the steering committee admits active local/regional efforts as a part of this big project under WMO. In my experience, a NMS asked me if my project is under WMO activity or not. He mentioned that if my project for making grid precipitation data is WMO related project, they will pass their data freely. It was not a big problem for us to pay for the data in terms of 3-5 years project. However, to update the data, it is not easy to go to each country frequently. (In many cases in Asia, negotiation and payment were done by visiting each NMS.)