BioSharing‘s Information Resources are curated and searchable web-based registries of linked information about content standards broadly including minimum information reporting requirements, terminologies and representation formats/models), databases, and (progressively) journal and policies in the life sciences.
In the life of science there are over 600 content standards and thousands of databases. If you’ve worked on a data management plan for an NSF grant, or shoot, just worked on sharing data, you may have been confronted with a drought or deluge of policies, metadata standards and other considerations as you describe how you will share your data.

The products of this WG will be principles for linking information about databases, content standards and journal and funder policies in the life sciences, and a curated and prototype registry, to access and cross-search the information, on which a variety of stakeholders can base their decisions. Specifically, journals, researchers and funders will be able to recommend or select mature and community endorsed databases and standards, and developers and curators of repositories and content standards will be aware of the requirements they need to meet to ensure their products are discoverable and well described so that they can be used by researchers or recommended by journals and funders.

BioSharing works to ensure that content standards are informative and discoverable, monitoring there:
– development, evolution and integration;
-implementation and use in databases; and
– adoption in data policies by funders and journals.

Specifically, BioSharing helps:
– Researchers, developers and curators navigate and select relevant content standards, understand their maturity, and find databases that implement them;
– Funders, journals, and librarians make informed decisions on which content standards or database should be recommended in their policies, funded or implemented.

In January, over 50 researchers from 30 academic and commercial organizations agreed on a standard for describing data sets. The BioSharing initiative, comprising both researchers and publishers, launched the Investigation-Study-Assay ISA Commons, which promises to streamline data sharing among different databases. Life scientists have thousands of databases, over 300 terminologies and more than 120 exchange formats at their disposal, says BioSharing co-founder Susanna-Assunta Sansone of the University of Oxford. In this era of collaborative big science, researchers only move forward by “walking together.”