Greetings, research computing and data (RCD) professionals! As we usher in the New Year, CaRCC and RCD Nexus would like to take a moment to look back on and celebrate some of our community’s exciting accomplishments in 2022:
To formalize and ensure community input and evaluation, CaRCC formed a new Advisory Committee and held its first annual meeting in January, 2022. The group consists of 12 members selected for their leadership and expertise within the broader RCD and cyberinfrastructure landscape. The group is instrumental in long-term planning as CaRCC continues a period of rapid growth.
We ramped up the work of our RCD Nexus NSF Cyberinfrastructure Center of Excellence(CI CoE) pilot grant, and began to provide more resources than ever before to both the CaRCC and broader RCD community. The RCD Nexus website currently serves as the CaRCC Career and Resource Center.
In May, 2022, CaRCC activity leaders, advisory committee members, and peers from across the RCD community met in Denver and joined remotely for a Strategic Planning Meeting. The meeting included discussion around CaRCC’s role in defining a framework for an RCD-CI professional society.
CaRCC has helped to facilitate the RCD Community Builders Group, a collaborative effort among nine RCD-CI organizations working together to support the community at-large. The group has been meeting monthly since March 2022. Additionally, CaRCC has formalized a partnership and collaboration with the CASC organization and had two meetings and presentations during which the groups discussed opportunities for collaboration.
The 2022 Research Computing and Data (RCD) Capabilities Model Community Dataset participation window will close on December 15, 2022. Please be sure to contribute your assessment using this form before you leave for winter break!
We are grateful to the following institutions who participated in 2020/21 and would love to see your institution’s name jointhis year’s list:
2022 Research Computing and Data (RCD) Capabilities Model Community Dataset participation window will close on December 15, 2022. Please be sure to contribute your assessment using this form before you leave for winter break.
Know of other institutions that might be interested in participating? Please help us reach them by passing this information along!
In lieu of July calls for most People Network tracks, make sure to check out the below events next week at PEARC22, all of which are a direct result of CaRCC-associated efforts for the RCD community. (See the full PEARC22 schedule here.)
Sunday, July 10:
RCD Nexus Day (colocated event), all-day parallel sessions on student/staff workforce development and on the RCD Capabilities Model ‘Essentials’ version
Tuesday, July 12:
Campus Research Computing Consortium (CaRCC) Town Hall (panel, organization update) 10:30 AM-12:00 PM, White Hill Room
Understanding Factors that Influence Research Computing and Data Careers (Best Full Paper, Workforce Track; Phil Andrews Award) 3:00 PM-3:30 PM, The Loft
Characterizing the US Research Computing and Data (RCD) Workforce (paper) 3:30 PM-4:00 PM, The Loft
Words Matter! Progress in Promoting Inclusion through Language in Advanced Research Computing (panel; CaRCC represented among other organizations) 5:00 PM-6:00 PM, The Loft
Thursday, July 14
Plenary and Awards (above RCD Career Arcs paper receiving Phil Andrews award!) 10:00 AM-12:30 PM Ballroom A
Attending PEARC22? Don’t miss this birds of a feather (BoF) session organized by Henry Neeman (University of Oklahoma), Dana Brunson (Internet2), and Dirk Colbry (Michigan State University).
Thursday, July 14 from 9-10am in the Berkeley/Clarendon rooms
Overview: The Certified Cyberinfrastructure Facilitator Training and Development (CCIFTD) program is a first-of-its- kind, non matriculated certification of professional development for CI Facilitators. CCIFTD’s role is to attest to proficiency in core skills needed for facilitating computing/data-intensive research, across all Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. The emphasis is on crucial professional/interpersonal skills, and complementary CI technical topics. CCIFTD focuses on establishing both (a) the set of skills and (b) a means for determining whether a CI Facilitator has these skills.
Motivation: The CI workforce suffers from a critical deficit of CI Facilitators, the CI professionals who work directly with researchers to advance computing/data-intensive aspects of their research. a vital role at many research institutions. Currently, there is a clear sense of the nature and value of the CI Facilitator role, but no well-defined set of skills agreed upon by the CI Facilitator community at large.
Methodology: 1. Determine the skills that are most valuable for CI Facilitation, by surveying (i) experienced CI Facilitators, (ii) CI organization leaders such as supercomputing center directors, and (iii) STEM researchers who use CI. 2. For each such skill, develop a badge, specifically a training mechanism, an examination instrument, and its scoring rubric, via pilot testing at workshops and online. 3. Construct certification pathways, subsets of badges that collectively merit certification. 4. Test badging methods. 5. Evaluate the CCIFTD program, both formatively during this pilot project and summatively at the end, to improve CCIFTD as it progresses and to determine how successful it has been.
It’s almost PEARC conference time again and we’re looking forward to the Fifth Workshop on Strategies for Enhancing HPC Education and Training on Monday, July 11, 2022.
That made us look back and remember some of the great things that happened at last year’s PEARC conference. In case you missed it, check out this report: Towards a National Best Practices Resource for Research Computing and Data Strategic Planning. It shares the activities and findings of a CaRCC RCD Nexus workshop that brought together Research Computing and Data (RCD) professionals to discuss leading practices for developing effective strategic plans for their Research Computing and Data programs.
The 2021 workshop had three goals:
Share the experiences of universities who are currently using the RCD Capabilities Model as part of their RCD strategic planning work, including lessons learned.
Discuss the range of RCD strategic planning models across the community and identify approaches to building a strong strategic planning practice.
Work towards the development of a shared community resource to support strategic planning for RCD, identify potential elements of such a resource and a near-term roadmap for development.
The report documents the workshop activity and findings, including shared observations as well as recommendations. In particular, it identifies four themes that emerged as “Desired elements of a strategic planning resource”:
A repository of templates, examples, and models of strategic planning
A collection of narratives and use-cases that describe successful programs
Examples and practices for communication strategies related to strategic planning
A program of mentoring and identifying expertise related to strategic planning
The information and insights in this report are being used to inform what we make available in our RCD-Nexus Resource and Career Center. Want to know more? Read the full report.
Report data is intended to support strategic planning and decision-making for campus leadership, funding agencies, RCD leaders, and others interested in advanced technologies that enable research.
Themes that emerged from the 2021 data include:
There is generally stronger support for Researcher-Facing, System-Facing, and Strategy and Policy-Facing areas, than for Data-Facing and Software-Facing capabilities.
R1 institutions have much higher levels of coverage than other Carnegie Classifications, particularly in certain areas.
EPSCoR institutions have significant gaps in capabilities coverage relative to institutions in other states, including dramatic gaps in certain areas of Data-Facing support.
“This level of data has never before been readily available to the RCD community,” said Patrick Schmitz, co-principal investigator on the RCD Nexus project. “We were intrigued to see that institutions who completed a second assessment in 2021 saw a marked increase in their capabilities related to RCD strategy and policy. It’s possible the assessment is already helping them improve their programs. We will work to continue expanding the dataset in the coming years, and are pleased to offer the RCD community a solid baseline dataset to help inform strategic planning.”
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant OAC-2100003. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
The RCD Nexus team is hosting workshops on Sunday July 10 preceding PEARC22 in Boston.
We’re planning working sessions on these topics:
Student Workforce Programs&Staff Onboarding and Workforce Development Practices and
Defining an RCD Capabilities Model Essentials version for smaller institutions and emerging RCD programs
Please save the date and fill in this form to express your interest in participating. We have limited funding to support travel for participants. We’ll follow up with more information on registration at a later date.