Online Data fair comes to USI

A week-long online data fair and webinar will take place for members of the public. 

Beginning Oct. 1. the event is open to all faculty, staff and students of member institutions including the university.

The entirely online seminars will take place in conjunction with the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR).

“Data is their thing, they store it, they solicit researchers for it, they are constantly thinking how to do it well,” director of the David L. Rice Library Marna Hostetler said. “Data is extremely important to researchers everywhere.”

Hostetler said the university has been a member of the ICPSR since 2015. The organization is mainly in North America but also encompasses a worldwide capacity.

“I think this would help students and would be informative for them and understand there is this huge repository of data,” she said. “As a member of ICPSR at USI, we can use that data.”

Hostetler, who serves as the official representative of ICPSR for the university, said that although there will be no coordination of a viewing party or other events, she will look to promote the event through flyers and via social media.

She said it is pivotal that students stay involved in the data process as it has implications for their future endeavors.

“The most important thing for us would be as researchers, faculty members, they have an office on campus that deals with research and grant applications, they would be interested as well,” she said.  “Also the office that deals with research and I think they would be very interested”

Each webinar session has a different topic dependant on the day. From information technology, data governance and safety, students will receive messages about a variety of topics.

Hostetler said ICPSR is keeping a focus on relevant topics for each day. 

ICPSR’s 2018 Data Fair will run from Oct. 1 through Oct. 5. For more visit