The World Data System (WDS) of the International Science Council (ISC) held its 2020 Members Forum online on September 23. CIESIN associate director of Science Applications Alex de Sherbinin, in his capacity as chair of the WDS Scientific Committee, helped organize and chair the Forum and gave a presentation on the issue of generalist versus domain-specific repositories. CIESIN director Robert Chen chaired a panel session, “Sustainability: Making the Case for Domain Repositories through Value of Information, Operational Use, and Web Services.” As manager of the NASA Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC), which is a regular member of WDS, Chen also pre-recorded a lightning presentation on SEDAC's strategic goals and plans. Other Forum participants included senior digital archivist Robert Downs and research scientist Susana Adamo, as well as representatives from several other NASA Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) and from NASA's Earth Science Data and Information System (ESDIS) Project, which is a network member of WDS.
In conjunction with the Forum, the International Symposium: Global Collaboration on Data Beyond Disciplines was held September 23–25. A plenary session to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the hosting of the WDS International Programme Office (WDS-IPO) by the Japanese National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) included pre-recorded remarks given by de Sherbinin on behalf of the WDS Scientific Committee.
CIESIN remains active in several different WDS activities. For example, Downs is a member of the WDS Harvestable Metadata Services (HMetS) Working Group and de Sherbinin co-leads the joint CODATA-WDS Citizen Science for the SDGs Task Group. He also chaired the virtual meeting of the WDS Scientific Committee on October 13–15.