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Note 1: For compatibility with the Global Change Master Directory, data descriptions must minimally include title, data center (point of contact), parameters measured, temporal and spatial coverage, and a summary (which should include temporal and spatial resolution - if applicable). The GCMD provides on-line Metadata creation tools, for fast and simple Metadata submissions.
The overall purpose of these policy statements is to facilitate full and
open access and use with confidence, both now and in the future, of the
data and information that is used in and results from global change
assessment activities. These policies reflect the goals and policies of
the U.S. Global Change Research Program and incorporate federal laws,
directives, and regulations regarding the maintenance and dissemination of
data and information in the Federal Government. They are recommended for
all participants in the National Assessment Program, including federal,
state, local, tribal, foreign, educational, non-government organizations
and their private partners.
· The U.S. Global Change Research Program's National Assessment Program requires a continuing commitment to the establishment, maintenance, description, accessibility, and long-term availability of high-quality, data and information.
· Full and open sharing of the full suite of data and published information produced by the Assessment Program is a fundamental objective. Data and information should be available without restriction, on a non-discriminatory basis, for no more than the cost of reproduction and distribution. Where possible, the access to the data should be via WWW to keep the cost of delivery to a minimum and to allow distribution to be as wide as possible.
· All data sets and published information used in the National Assessment Program should be identified with a citation; for data sets an indication of how the data may be accessed should be provided.
· All data sets generated as part of the National Assessment Program must be described and a quality assessment provided. In addition, steps should be taken to assure their continuing availability. Standards used for the descriptions of individual data sets developed by the National Assessment Program should be compatible with at least the minimum needs of the Global Change Master Directory (see note 1). Spatial data set descriptions should also be compatible with the Content Standards for Digital Geospatial Metadata of the Federal Geographic Data Committee. All such data set descriptions should be made available for inclusion in the Global Change Master Directory.
· Organizations and individuals participating in the Assessment Program should actively participate in its Web page to share information and coordinate the Program's disparate activities. The identifications of all the Program's published information and data sets, as well as the Program's data set descriptions, should be made accessible over the Internet and be compliant with the current version of the ANSI Z39.50 search and retrieval standard.
AUTHORITIES AND REFERENCES.
As reflected in the following authorities and references, the Executive and Legislative branches of the U.S. Government both recognize the need for federal agencies to assume an active role in providing information to the public.