The Research Data Alliance (RDA) is a community-driven, action-oriented, virtual organization building social and technical bridges to enable the open sharing of data by. The international RDA community includes over 4500 members, each with diverse perspectives, domains, and expertise. RDA members work together to identify common interests and form exploratory Interest Groups and outcome-oriented Working Groups. Participants exchange knowledge, share discoveries, discuss barriers and potential solutions, articulate policies, and align standards to enhance and facilitate global data sharing within and across domains and communities.
RDA is an organization of action. 18 months after the 2013 RDA launch, the first Working Groups had already produced a series of well-defined and adopted Recommendations publically available for wider integration. Adopted and endorsed RDA Recommendations include Persistent Identifier Information Types, a Foundational Terminology query tool, Machine-Actionable Policy Templates, a Data Type Model and Registry, a Data Publishing Reference Model, and Repository Audit and Certification Guidelines. Other Recommendations and Supporting Outputs, include a metadata standards directory, legal interoperability guidelines, and cost recovery models for repositories. The number of RDA Working Groups and resulting Recommendations continues to increase over time.
RDA members are individuals and organizations who subscribe to RDA's Guiding Principles including Openness, Consensus, and Balance. In most (if not all) cases, RDA members also participate in other communities and/or partnerships such as ESIP. This raises important considerations for RDA in terms of scope, sustainability, realistic volunteer engagement, facilitation, and coordinated partnerships across the data landscape. By identifying common interests and maintaining ongoing partnerships and collaboration, individuals and data communities alike can increase our collective ability to create and maintain critical, integrated, and usable data infrastructure.