USGS personnel are highly encouraged to publicly expose their data by registering metadata assets in the USGS Science Data Catalog. Please visit the suggested workflow to register data.
The USGS Science Data Catalog displays USGS open data assets in a searchable public data listing, while offering a single point of entry for USGS records to display in Department of the Interior and data.gov indexes, among others.
On May 9, 2013, the White House released the Executive Order, "Making Open and Machine Readable the New Default for Government." This Order, built upon an earlier interagency memorandum released by the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), was accompanied by an Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Policy and a site hosted on GitHub called Project Open Data, to guide implementation.
To meet the requirements outlined in these initiatives, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has undertaken a variety of tasks in concert with the Department of the Interior (DOI) to display USGS open data assets in a searchable public data listing. This listing serves as an official inventory for meeting Office of Management and Budget requirements, and the SDC serves as a single point of entry for USGS records to display in Department of the Interior and data.gov indexes, among others.
The Science Data Catalog describes USGS-produced, authoritative data that have undergone the data release process outlined in USGS Fundamental Science Practices. The Catalog includes metadata describing individual datasets, data collections, and observational or remotely-sensed data contained in national systems (rather than records about individual observations). All items in the Science Data Catalog must contain an actionable link to the data or a data service. Links must lead to downloadable datasets, which may take the form of a zip file, an individual spreadsheet, a topographic map, or a USGS Data Series Report. Additionally, links may lead to an online data system containing hundreds or even thousands of individual datasets, where users are prompted to execute a more specific search. Finally, the metadata may include links to access the data via APIs and services, including map services.
Data Providers (USGS Science Centers and other data-producing/managing organizations) can contribute their metadata to the Science Data Catalog through the Data Provider Dashboard. The Dashboard allows users to point to metadata records from various sources, highlight featured records, and describe USGS entities sharing responsibility for the data. Data Providers are encouraged to designate a metadata steward to coordinate the contribution of metadata records and ensure that metadata meet the minimum requirements for release.
Metadata must be in Extensible Markup Language (XML) format and follow the Federal Geographic Data Committee's (FGDC) endorsed Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata (CSDGM). In the future, the Science Data Catalog will accept metadata adhering to formats prescribed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) suite (e.g., 19115-1, 19115-2, 19119, 19111, etc.) Visit the USGS Data Management Web site for more information about metadata creation.
For inclusion in the Science Data Catalog, metadata stewards register metadata collections using the Dashboard from three possible sources:
For more information about using the Dashboard, visit Help.
Yes, you can. To establish a regularly-scheduled harvest to run daily, weekly, or monthly, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Updates or changes to metadata must be performed on the source XML metadata record that is harvested by the Science Data Catalog; these records are managed by the program or science center at the point of harvest (WAF, SiteMap or ScienceBase). If you have previously registered a WAF or SiteMap URL as a data source in the Dashboard and have subsequently added records to these sources, please contact email@example.com to request a reharvest to update records reported to the Science Data Catalog. A reharvest will replicate what is provided in the WAF or SiteMap, deleting and updating items, reflecting the records provided in the data source. If you have added additional records to the ScienceBase data source, these records will be automatically transferred to the Science Data Catalog, requiring no additional action from the data provider. Records deleted from ScienceBase will also be deleted from the Science Data Catalog.
Questions about the USGS Science Data Catalog and Data Provider Dashboard can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.