Population Association of America (PAA) 2015 Annual Meeting, April 29-May 2, San Diego, CA

The upcoming annual meeting of the Population Association of America (PAA) will be held on Wednesday, April 29th through Saturday, May 2nd at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel in San Diego, CA. For more information on the annual meeting, please visit the meeting page on the PAA website.

DSDR is excited to be showcasing two presentations at its booth in the Exhibit Hall. The first slideshow highlights studies in the DSDR collection, and can be viewed here. The second provides examples of genomic, data harmonization, and big data projects that will be featured in the new Union Catalog of NICHD-funded studies, and can be viewed here.

We look forward to seeing users at the DSDR booth (#105) in the Exhibit Hall!

New Releases through 2015-04-26

Below is a list of new data collection additions to the ICPSR data archive along with a list of released data collections that have been updated:

New Additions

Note: Additional SAMHDA studies may be available though they are not listed in this email/web site announcement.


Digital Curation Policies and Well-Trained Workforce Needed to Handle Fast-Growing Collections of Digital Information

WASHINGTON -- From distant satellites to medical implants, sensors are collecting unprecedented quantities of digital data across the scientific disciplines. Other sectors -- government, business, and health – are collecting huge amounts of data and information as well. If accurate and accessible, such information has the potential to speed scientific discovery, spur innovation, inform policy, and support transparency.

However, the policies, infrastructure, and workforce needed to manage this information have not kept pace with its rapid growth, says a new report from the National Research Council. The immaturity and ad hoc nature of the field of digital curation – the active management and enhancement of digital information assets for current and future use -- so far has led to vulnerabilities and missed opportunities for science, business, and government.

There is an urgent need for policies, technologies, and expertise in digital curation, said the committee that conducted the study and wrote the report. It recommends that the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy lead policy development in digital curation and prioritize strategic resource investments for the field. Research communities, government agencies, commercial firms, and educational institutions should work together to speed the development and adoption of digital curation standards and good practices.

The report also offers several recommendations for strengthening the digital curation workforce. Currently there is little data available on how – and how many -- digital curation professionals are being trained and the career paths they follow. Moreover, it is difficult to estimate current and future demand because digital curation takes place in many types of jobs. The primary source of statistics on employment in the federal government, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, does not track digital curation as a separate occupation. However, the committee could estimate the current demand for digital curation professionals by examining data on job openings for related occupations -- enterprise architects, data stewards, librarians and archivists, among others. Openings for almost all of these professions at least doubled between 2005 and 2012, the committee found.

Government agencies, private employers, and professional associations should develop better mechanisms to track the demand for individuals in jobs where digital curation is the primary focus, the report says. The Bureau of Labor Statistics should add a digital curation occupational title to the Standard Occupational Classification when it revises the SOC system in 2018; this recognition would also help to strengthen the attention given to digital curation in workforce preparation. Tracking employment openings for digital curation professionals, enrollments in professional education programs, and the career trajectories of their graduates would help balance supply with demand on a national scale.

In addition, OSTP should convene relevant federal organizations, professional associations, and private foundations to encourage the development of model curricula, training programs, and instructional materials that advance digital curation as a recognized discipline. Educators in institutions offering professional education in digital curation should create partnerships with educators, scholars, and practitioners in data-intensive disciplines and established data centers. These partnerships could speed the definition of best practices and guiding principles as they mature and evolve.

The study was sponsored by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the National Science Foundation. The National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, and National Research Council make up the National Academies. They are private, independent nonprofit institutions that provide science, technology, and health policy advice under a congressional charter granted to NAS in 1863. The National Research Council is the principal operating arm of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering. For more information, visit http://national-academies.org.

Sara Frueh, Media Relations Officer
Christina Anderson, Media Assistant
Office of News and Public Information
202-334-2138; e-mail news@nas.edu
Twitter: @NAS_news and @NASciences
RSS feed: http://www.nationalacademies.org/rss/index.html
Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nationalacademyofsciences/sets

Pre-publication copies of Preparing the Workforce for Digital Curation are available from the National Academies Press on the Internet at www.nap.edu or by calling 202-334-3313 or 1-800-624-6242. Reporters may obtain a copy from the Office of News and Public Information (contacts listed above).


Social Capital and Children's Development: A randomized controlled trial conducted in 52 schools in Phoenix and San Antonio, 2008-2013 (ICPSR 35481)

The Social Capital and Children's Development data were collected in a study of the causal effects of social capital on levels and inequalities of children's social and cognitive development during the early elementary years. The study included 52 schools in Phoenix and San Antonio, including 3,084 first graders and their families, and over 200 teachers, with half the schools randomly selected for the intervention and half serving as controls. Children from low-income Latino families were a special focus of the study. 
Key aspects of child development were assessed, including (a) social skills and problem behavior from standardized behavioral ratings by parents and teachers, and (b) grade retention, attendance rates, and third-grade reading and mathematics scores from school records. Social capital was measured with repeated surveys of teachers and parents that address the extent of social networks, parent involvement, trust, and shared expectations among parents, between parents and schools, and between parents and children. 
Demographic variables of this study include native language, years in the United States, date of birth/age, race/ethnicity, gender, and household composition.

New Releases through 2015-04-19

Below is a list of new data collection additions to the ICPSR data archive along with a list of released data collections that have been updated:

New Additions


Note: Additional SAMHDA studies may be available though they are not listed in this email/web site announcement.


Richard Suzman, Director of NIA's Division of Behavioral and Social Research, passes away at age 72

We are saddened to share a note from National Institute on Aging Director Richard Hodes:

Dear NIA colleagues,

It is with a heavy heart that I inform you that Dr. Richard Suzman, director of NIA's Division of Behavioral and Social Research, passed away last night. He was 72. As some of you may know, Richard had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Richard was one of the most creative and innovative scientists I know, who with an unrivaled energy and determination helped transform the behavioral and social sciences.  He modernized the science of demography and developed new fields, including the bio-demography of aging. In his 30 years of distinguished federal service, Richard brought us several new transdisciplinary fields of study, including neuro-economics, social neuroscience, and behavioral genetics. His career changed our understanding of longevity and aging, integrating economic and social behavior with biological and clinical aspects of advancing age.

At NIH, his vision contributed to important trans-NIH initiatives. The Common Fund’s interest in the Science of Behavior Change and Health Economics are already making a difference, through studies of new ways to intervene in health behaviors, including tobacco use, diabetes management, and the dissemination of and adherence to medical regimens. His understanding of how economics can affect health and aging has already changed trajectories for participation in pension savings in the U.S., for the benefit of today’s older Americans and generations to come.

Perhaps his key achievement is the U.S. Health and Retirement Study, which has grown to encompass a group of connected international surveys that cover more than half the world’s population. These related surveys allow researchers to compare data on aging cross-nationally, demonstrating how both common and unique biological, cultural, institutional, and policy features can impact health and well-being with age. The loss of Richard will not only be felt here, but internationally.

Richard was a tireless advocate for the best in science and for the health of older people and their families. In the coming weeks and months, we will be talking a lot about Richard Suzman, both the scientist and the irascible character, whom we will remember with admiration and affection. At a personal level, Richard was for me a constant example of what can be accomplished through vision, energy, and intellect.  If I was ever tempted to lapse into complacency, Richard made it clear that this would not be tolerated.  I will follow up with you all soon, as we plan and join tributes and remembrances for our colleague and friend.

Richard Hodes,
Director, National Institute on Aging


New Releases through 2015-04-12

Below is a list of new data collection additions to the ICPSR data archive along with a list of released data collections that have been updated:

New Additions


Note: Additional SAMHDA studies may be available though they are not listed in this email/web site announcement.

SAMHDA 4/23/15 Webinar: Online Analysis of SAMHSA Public-Use Data with Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA)

Online Analysis of SAMHSA Public-Use Data with Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA)
Broadcast time (EDT): Thursday, April 23 at 1:00 pm

SAMHDA invites you to attend a webinar to learn the fundamentals of analyzing SAMHSA public-use data online without specialized software or downloading of data.

Join this webinar to learn the basics of analyzing SAMHSA public-use data with Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA) on the SAMHDA website. The webinar will provide an overview of SDA's interface, analytic functions, and available help resources. The presenters will demonstrate how to use SDA for variable recoding and computation, crosstabulation, comparison of means, and regression.


Outlook on Life Surveys, 2012 (ICPSR 35348)

The 2012 Outlook Surveys, conducted by GfK Knowledge Networks on behalf of the University of California Irvine, were designed to study political and social attitudes in the United States. The project included two surveys fielded between August and December 2012 using a sample from an Internet panel. A total of 2,294 respondents participated in this study during Wave 1 and 1,601 were interviewed during Wave 2. 

The target population was comprised of four groups: African American/Black males aged 18 and older, African American/Black females aged 18 and older, White/other race males aged 18 and older, and White/other race females aged 18 older, all non-institutionalized and residing in the United States. The survey considered the ways in which social class, ethnicity, marital status, feminism, religiosity, political orientation, sexual behavior, and cultural beliefs or stereotypes influence opinion and behavior. 

Participants were asked an array of questions pertaining to voting preference, party identification, respondent perception of opportunity for success, and views on interracial dating. These variables and questions examine political and social attitudes in the United States. Additional questions addressed issues such as common fate, nationalism, equality, discrimination, and relations with law enforcement. Demographic variables include race ethnicity, age, gender, religious involvement, sexual orientation, citizenship, annual income, and education.


Click here to explore variables


Population Reference Bureau (PRB) Webinar: "Mapping Research Approaches to the Demographic Dividend"

The Population Reference Bureau (PRB) invites users to attend a webinar entitled "Mapping Research Approaches to the Demographic Dividend", which will be held on Thursday, Apr. 23, 2015, from 10:00 AM–11:00 AM (EDT) (GMT-4). Those interested may register here. The webinar will be led by Marlene Lee, Ph.D., program director of Academic Research and Relations at the PRB, and Parfait Eloundou-Enyegue, Ph.D., professor in Development Sociology and Demography at Cornell University. Their discussion will be followed by 10-15 minutes of Q&A.

Joining the online webinar is free. Participants who choose to listen to the audio via telephone are responsible for their own standard long-distance rates.


2015 Integrating Genetics and the Social Sciences Conference

The Institute of Behavioral Science and University of Colorado Population Center are hosting the sixth annual conference entitled "Integrating Genetics and the Social Sciences" in Boulder, Colorado on October 22-23, 2015. From the conference's Call for Papers, the goal of the conference is to showcase behavioral and molecular genetic studies that enhance demographic and social scientific inquiry. Researchers from any of the biological or social sciences are encouraged to participate. Information about the 2014 conference can be found here.

Researchers interested in being considered for this conference should apply here by June 1, 2015.