Director of Research


One of the key strategies of the WHOI Ocean Informatics Initiative is to identify and collaborate with partners that complement each others needs and skills in data science and informatics.

RPI Tetherless World

The Tetherless World Constellation (TWC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) explores the research and engineering principles that underlie the Web and develops new technologies that expand the capabilities of the Web. The faculty and staff use powerful mathematical and scientific techniques from many disciplines to explore the modeling of the Web from both network- and information- centric views. TWC conducts research and education in semantic e-science and data science with themes including semantic data frameworks, next generation virtual observatories/organizations, knowledge integration, and knowledge provenance for science.

Woods Hole Science Community

The Woods Hole scientific community includes a number of research organizations in the Woods Hole area interested in employing informatics in effective ways. These include: Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), Woods Hole Research Center (WHRC), USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center, NOAA/NMFS Northeast Fisheries Science Center, Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (WBNERR), and Sea Education Association (SEA).

Together this group of organizations represents a rich coverage of science disciplines, geographic areas of interest, organization types, data/information/knowledge products, and data types. It is this richness and variety and the concentration of researchers on this small peninsula that make Woods Hole an attractive location in which to do science informatics research.

USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center

WHOI and the USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program are partners in a cooperative agreement "CC-6 Inter-disciplinary Informatics in Support of Decision Support Systems and Policy" for 2015-2020. The U.S. National Ocean Policy requires a solid science foundation for national and regional policy development and management of coastal and ocean resources. As a result, both organizations need to improve capabilities for cataloging data they hold, making these data available to stakeholders and as inputs to and constraints for computer models, and relating these data to derived data products. The cooperative agreement enables both organizations to jointly develop information systems, provide training opportunities, and develop staff skills via complementary infrastructures that further both organizations’ missions while also providing collaborative sharing of data with other agencies and research organizations.

Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)

WHOI is also a Type II member (researchers and tool developers) of the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP). ESIP is an open networked community that brings together science, data, and information technology practitioners (

ESIP working groups produced recent papers on data provenance (1) and sustainable scientific software (2).

(1) Hills, D. J., R. R. Downs, R. Duerr, J. C. Goldstein, M. A. Parsons, and H. K. Ramapriyan (2015), The importance of data set provenance for science, Eos, 96, doi:10.1029/2015EO040557.

(2) Downs, R.R., Lenhardt, W.C., Robinson, E., Davis, E., and Weber, N. (2015) Community Recommendations for Sustainable Scientific Software. J. Open Research Software 3, doi:10.5334/

Last updated: December 15, 2015