On Friday, March 21, members of the science and policy communities met to discuss the current challenges and opportunities in neuroscience data sharing as well as possible ways to advance data sharing going forward. Panelists included representatives from the neuroscience, industry, statistics, database, funding, and scientific journal communities. The biggest obstacle facing neuroscience data sharing appears to be the need for cultural change (i.e. creating an environment in which data sharing is part of the work flow for scientists instead of an afterthought and a burden). One solution that was discussed is the inclusion of data sharing practices in the evaluation of promotion and tenure decisions. Another is the development and widespread use of technologies that make data sharing an easy part of the scientific process. A second obstacle is the high cost for not only sharing data, but also maintaining and curating that data. It is currently unclear whose responsibility this should be. Before sharing can become widespread, the community must determine exactly what data should be shared. There are differing opinions on this; should investigators share all raw data, only processed data, or only data pertaining to the experimental questions of the study? Improvements in hard drives continually make it easier to store and share large quantities of data, but as more and more data is collected with new tools and techniques, this will become a bigger issue and one that must be addressed.
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It is my sad duty to report to you that our good friend and comrade Colonel James Michael Lowe, USMC, Senior Research Fellow and Director of the Center for Emerging Threats and Opportunities executed his final set of earthly PCS orders at 1800 today.
Before Joining Potomac Institute Mike served his country as one of the best Marine Officers of his generation. We could write a book about Mike’s Marine Corps service, but I think the words of the 29th Commandant, Gen Al Gray, sum it up well “Mike is a very special Marine Warrior, one of a kind, who has made many significant contributions to our Country and to the Nation’s Corps of Marines. May God bless him and his family always.”
Mike spent his entire post Marine Corps career as a member of Potomac Institute. Mike’s peerless leadership, intellect, work ethic and sense of humor made CETO the dynamic success it is and the place to work. Mike labored tirelessly for his Potomac Institute family and I can attest that Mike worked on our behalf until he could no longer lift his head and open his eyes.
I will pass along information regarding Mike’s funeral and memorial service once known. In the interim I ask that you all keep Mike’s wife Susan and his children Jameson, Alexis and Shannon in your thoughts and prayers.
Below is a speech that Mike gave when he was the Commander of Marine Corps Base Quantico, to a class of new second lieutenants at a Basic School Mess Night. Some of you may have seen the speech before because it was widely shared on the Internet and in news media. I believe it is worth the read. For those who served with Mike it will bring you a smile. For those who did not have the opportunity to know Mike on active duty it will give you a good idea about Mike Lowe the Marine.
Very respectfully and Semper Fi,
Tom O’Leary, Col., USMC (ret)
The following are the remarks of Col. Mike Lowe, the Commander of Marine Corps Base Quantico. These remarks are very much to the point and the Colonel held the absolute attention of everyone at the mess.
Neurotechnology, like many developing sciences, is a multi-disciplinary field that has the potential to revolutionize medicine, law, warfare, and education.
The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies and The American Association for the Advancement of Science will be hosting a series of symposia intended to provide a forum for the public and policymakers focused on the societal impacts of neuroscience and technology. One of the goals of the series is to develop future U.S. policy recommendations.
Neuroscience and technology will affect our society in more ways that we currently imagine. The speed of technology development significantly outpaces that of policy development.