By: Rebecca Cerio
Our weekly linkpost, bringing you interesting and informative links on science policy issues buzzing about the internet.
Making Big Data Easier to Access – Two new initiatives–one from the new journal GigaScience and one from PLoS and data repository, Dryad–aim to make today’s complex scientific data easier to publish, distribute, and re-use. Both acknowledge the difficulty of publishing, curating, and archiving large, complicated datasets from everything from genomic sequencing initiatives to neurological studies and aim to make these files more readily available.
And, two articles from Amanda Glassman and Rachel Silverman via the Center for Global Development’s blog. Thanks to the Global Health Interest Forum for the link to these!
Failure to Launch: A Post-Mortem of the Global Health Initiative - “[In 2009], the Global Health Initiative (GHI) promised a new way for the United States to do business in global health. Fragmented U.S. programs would be united under a single banner; vertical structures would be dismantled in favor of an integrated approach; and narrow, disease-focused programs would transition toward a focus on broader health challenges, such as maternal health, child survival, and health systems’ strengthening. Flash forward to this past Tuesday, when the GHI blog posted its own death notice.”
Contraception: Necessary but Not Sufficient - An excellent piece on how increasing access to contraception does not always lead to a reduction in poor women’s fertility. Glassman and Silverman point out that having children can be influenced by social and cultural forces linked to socioeconomic status, disenfranchisement, and a lack of opportunities, which make having children the most empowering choice available. Thus, they conclude, an increased focus solely on contraception may be less useful than a comprehensive program addressing women’s lack of economic and educational opportunities.
Have an interesting science policy link? Share it in the comments!