Open Science at CMU Newsletter - February 2021


Hello! We are excited to share opportunities to get involved with the Open Science & Data Collaborations Program, such as our new Advisory Group. We also have a lot of events and workshops coming up. Here's to a new year filled with reproducible, collaborative, and open research!

Please contact us at if you have any questions and follow us on social media at #CMUOpenScience.

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Join the Advisory Group for the Open Science & Data Collaborations Program

We cordially invite you to join the advisory group for the Open Science & Data Collaborations (OSDC) program


Since its inception two years ago, the OSDC program at CMU Libraries has been providing tools, training, and support for the CMU community to make their research workflow and output more open, accessible, reusable, and reproducible. Our goal is to support and empower an open, collaborative, and interdisciplinary research community and to build a healthy data ecosystem together. 


This semester, we are launching an advisory group that includes CMU faculty, postdocs, and graduate students to help us expand our vision and determine what to prioritize moving forward. Because you are at the frontlines of research, we are very eager to hear your thoughts: what does open science and collaboration mean to you, what open science projects or methods do you work on, what challenges do you face in sharing your work, what support would you like to have. By joining in a conversation with us and other like-minded CMU researchers, you can help steer our program in the right direction! 


We are asking our advisory team members to commit to three or four 1 or 2 hour meetings for one year. Beyond that year, members are welcome to continue as members of the advisory board or to rotate off. Additional time may be allocated to reviewing and providing feedback on documentation, marketing materials or product trials. 


To learn more, chat with us, or sign up, please email

Love Data Week!

Every year around Valentine's Day, universities and libraries around the world participate in Love Data Week (February 8 - 12, 2021), an effort to raise awareness related to managing, sharing, preserving, and reusing research data. The Carnegie Mellon University Libraries are no exception! This year, we'll be offering a host of virtual events and online engagement activities with the theme 'Exploring your Relationship with Data,' and encouraging the CMU community to consider the importance of loving and caring for their research data!

Below, please find a list of our Love Data Week-branded workshops, with links for registration information (all times in Eastern Standard Time): 

Monday, February 8th: Data Visualization Recommended Practices: 12:00pm - 1:00pm 

Wednesday, February 10th: Cleaning Untidy Data with OpenRefine: 12:00pm - 1:30pm 

Thursday, February 11th: Data Management for Qualitative Data: 12:00pm - 1:00pm  

Friday, February 12th: Using LabArchives to Manage Your Research: 2:00pm - 3:00pm

We'll also be offering a host of online engagement activities via social media including trivia, downloadable custom designs in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and a virtual scavenger hunt, so be sure to follow us on Twitter (@CMULibraries) and Instagram (cmulibraries) to learn more! We're also collaborating with the Health Sciences Library System and University Libraries at The University of Pittsburgh to promote our Love Data Week activities, and you can see a full list of workshops here: Be sure to follow the hashtag #lovedatapgh for all the fun data activities happening that week! 

1:1 Consultations for LabArchives

All CMU affiliates have free access to LabArchives, a cloud-based electronic research notebook platform that can be used for collaborative research or teaching in any discipline (not just science and engineering!). This tool has proved really useful during this time of remote work for many in the CMU community. LabArchives is offering consultations with individual researchers, instructors, or lab groups to provide customized support on how to get started with the platform or even to just explore if it is the right platform for them. To set up a consultation, please email Linda Cubias ( at LabArchives. You can also find more information about how to use our Professional and Educational licenses here:

Data Collaborations Lab Office Hours are Back!

The office hours of the Data Collaborations Lab (dataCoLAB) will continue this semester, jointly hosted with the CMU Libraries Data Office Hours, every Wednesday at 1-3 PM online. 

We offer help to everyone in the CMU and Pittsburgh community at all levels of learning data and programming. If you are a beginner and trying to learn, we can help you get started on the command line, GitHub, Python or R programming, get an introduction to the wide array of data visualization, GIS, text analysis, and data mining research methods. If you are struggling with a data analysis project, we can help you to troubleshoot and connect you with an external consultant with the right expertise. If you have data or programming expertise and would like to volunteer as a consultant to get experience, help others to learn, or work on real-world data, we can also match you up.  

To get in touch, email, join our Slack channel at, or sign up to get help with your data analysis or volunteer as a consultant

Statistics & Data Science Students Team Up to Help CMU Libraries Leverage Open Data
Every semester, the Statistics and Data Science program runs capstone and research courses to give students experience consulting with real-world clients. In 2020, the dataCoLAB team at CMU Libraries became one of those clients, and worked with talented teams of undergraduate students to use data from the Libraries and open data resources to create tools and answer questions that help improve Libraries services and use our resources in new ways. Last summer, for example, our team worked with students as part of the Summer Undergraduate Research Apprenticeship program to create dashboard-like tools with data on Libraries' collections usage and circulation. The students parsed and visualized this routinely collected data in new ways that can help us make better decisions about staffing and collection development. In the Fall, a group of students worked with data generated from the Dimensions database on past and current grant funding for CMU research. They created interactive online tools ( and that allow a user to dynamically explore the grant funding landscape of CMU research over time. This can aid in identifying potential future funding sources and facilitate new collaborations. In fact, the product engagement team at Dimensions was so excited to learn about this creative application of their open data that the students have been invited to do a webinar to showcase their work to a broad audience of Dimensions users. 
Opportunities to Get Involved with the Carpentries
We are thrilled to announce that we have renewed our institutional membership with The Carpentries and will have a series of virtual workshops during the next year.

Over the last 2 years, we have hosted 10 workshops that have brought together about 275 students, staff, and researchers from CMU and Pitt to learn basic programming and data science skills. 

We continue to build our local Carpentries community and are looking for volunteers to help run these popular workshops. If you have already attended a workshop, you might remember the important role that "helpers" play. The helpers are the folks that float around the room and help our learners debug as they go. They make the workshop run smoothly and are a key component to their success!

If you are interested in volunteering to be a helper, please write us at Anyone with working familiarity with organizing spreadsheets, OpenRefine, Git, Unix, Python or R can help out! This is a great opportunity for anyone that is interested in instruction or data science and can lead to free certification as a Carpentries instructor.

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions about these opportunities - we are excited to talk to you!

Spring Workshop Series

We have a host of wonderful data and open science-themed virtual workshops lined up for Spring 2021! You can see a complete list of all our workshop offerings for Spring 2021 on the main CMU Libraries website, but we've also highlighted some below (each title is a clickable link which will take you to the registration page):