December 2020 National eResearch Newsletter

Welcome to the December 2020 National eResearch Newsletter

We are very sad to say goodbye to Sam Moskwa, who has resigned from his post as AeRO CEO to return to full-time work at CSIRO. We thank him for his great contribution to AeRO and the eResearch community, and wish him every success in the future.

We are *not* sad to say farewell to 2020! What a year it has been! We look forward to a healthier 2021, and improved opportunities to interact and contribute to with and via AeRO in this New Year, hopefully sometimes face-face!

We thank all our readers and contributors for their support this past year, and wish you all a safe and happy holiday season.

Alex Reid, Newsletter Editor

Women in HPC Australasia Continues to Grow:  16-Dec.

Following the launch of the Women in HPC Australasia chapter in October, the community has continued to grow.


The final meeting of the year will be on Wednesday the 16th of December at 2:30PM AEST.  All welcome, please join us for some end of year chats with colleagues across countries, facilities, roles and time zones!


Meeting registration is at

Feedback on Microbiome Analysis Infrastructure Roadmap Sought by 18-Jan.

Please provide feedback on the Australian BioCommons’ Microbiome Analysis Infrastructure Roadmap (see  We welcome comment and feedback from all practitioners and interested parties of microbiome analysis (inclusive of targeted amplicon sequencing and shotgun metagenomic sequencing) in Australia.  Feedback can be submitted either directly as comments into the linked google doc or via email back to Tiffanie Nelson up until 18 January 2021.


Forward this to any Australian researcher or interested party undertaking microbiome analysis.  If you would like be keep up to date on activities related to this community including Roadmap updates, join our Google Group at

Data and Modelling in Science Survey:  closes 21-Jan.

Do you currently analyse and model ecological data?  Would you like to spend less time wrangling data and configuring models and spend more time collaborating and doing the science?


EcoCommons wants your input to its ‘Data and Modelling in Science survey’ at  Have a chance to win a $250 Visa Gift Card!


Over the next three years, EcoCommons will be working to build trusted, world-leading ecological and environmental modelling tools, which will become the platform of choice for Australian practitioners and researchers to analyse and model ecological data.


Read more at or on the fact sheet ( Fact Sheet_Nov20.pdf).

eResearch New Zealand 2021 – Earlybird closes 11-Jan.

The next annual NZ eResearch Conference (online and face-face) will take place in Wellington from 10 – 12 Feb, 2021.


Early bird registration closes 11 Jan.

The in-person and online conference features a theme of Level UP, focusing on the increasing speed, agility, scale, and collaboration required in research today, which is even more important with COVID-19’s global impact on research.


Read more and register at

ARDC Announces 34 New Projects to Strengthen Australian Research.

The Australian Research Data Commons (ARDC) investment of $17.13 million into digital research infrastructure, with co-investment $23.84 million from collaborating organisations, ensures the research community will continue to strengthen Australia’s health outlook, economy and environment.


For ARDC Public Sector Bridges 2020, see


For ARDC Platforms 2020, see


For ARDC Australian Data Partnerships 2020, see

How to Publish your Data with TERN.

Sharing your data to ensure provenance and promote re-use and citation—in other words, making it FAIR—just became a whole lot easier with the launch of a new, streamlined ISO compliant version of our data submission tool, SHaRED.



Researcher Opportunity: New ausplotsR is Available Now!

Need to quickly map sites and graph things like fractional vegetation cover or relative cover of plant growth forms for multiple plots?  These are all possible with the new and updated version of TERN’s ausplotsR package, which also provides free and instant access to a decade of soil and vegetation data collected at over 780 environmental monitoring sites across Australia.



Next Tech Talk Likely in Early Feb.

Slides from Tech Talk 2020/2 are available – Serverless Web Applications:  See (where information and recordings from earlier Tech Talks can be seen).  Video coming soon.


Please Suggest topics and Vote on upcoming Tech Talk topics at

NISO-Plus 2021 Conference Registrations Now Open.

The NISO Plus 2021 Conference (National Information Standards Organization) will be held virtually from 22-25 February, 2021.


Entitled “Global Conversations :: Global Connections” it will be a place where publishers, vendors, librarians, archivists, product managers, metadata specialists, electronic resource managers, and much more come together to both solve existing problems and more importantly have conversations that prevent future problems from ever occurring.



eResearch NZ 2021 Programme Coming this Week!

The final touches are being put on the preliminary programme of eResearch NZ 2021 so that a sneak peek can be unveiled this week!  Co-hosted by New Zealand eScience Infrastructure (NeSI), REANNZ, and Genomics Aotearoa, we’ll be gathering research communities in person and online from 10-12 February 2021.  Thank you to everyone who submitted presentations – we’ve got submissions from across New Zealand and Australia showcasing how research communities used 2020 to #LevelUP.


More information:

Researchers Flock to CloudStor.

More than 100,000 people in the research and education community have used AARNet’s CloudStor service since it launched in 2014.  Over the years CloudStor has evolved from a large file transfer solution to the high performing and easy-to-use collaboration workspace it is today.


Co-developed with the community, CloudStor now offers a growing range of integrated tools for sharing and analysing data.  Watch this video to find out why neuroscientist and Macquarie University Research Fellow Robert Luke loves CloudStor:

Research Data Alliance (RDA) 17th Plenary Meeting – Edinburgh, 20-22 April 2021.

The Digital Curation Centre in collaboration with Jisc and STFC-UKRI will be hosting RDA’s 17th Plenary meeting on 20-22 April 2021, either as a hybrid event, or as a virtual event.


The Call for Sessions is now open and closes on 12 January 2021, 23:59 UTC.


The Call for Co-located events is now open and closes on 12 February 2021.


You can find more information about the Plenary on the RDA Web site at

Recapping the New Zealand Research Software Engineering Conference.

Presentations from the 2020 New Zealand Research Software Engineering (NZ RSE) Conference are now available to view on Figshare.  The conference, hosted by New Zealand eScience Infrastructure (NeSI), featured 34 speakers and 181 registrants from six different countries (New Zealand, Australia, United States, France, China, Pakistan).  To learn more about ongoing initiatives to build the RSE communities in both New Zealand and Australia, visit the RSE-AUNZ website at


More information at:

Sensitive Data Service to be Piloted by AARNet.

AARNet has recently been collaborating with members of the research community to develop a proof of concept for a Sensitive Data service designed to meet their unique needs.  The project arose in response to the demand from AARNet customers for a secure and sustainable long-term cloud environment located in Australia where sensitive research data can be collected, stored and analysed.


The proof of concept was shared with the eResearch community at the eRA20 conference in October and moves into pilot phase in early 2021 with an initial three institutions on board.


More information or to express interest in participating, contact

Tracking Bogong Moths to Support Possum Conservation.

Federation University Australia’s Centre for eResearch and Digital Innovation (CeRDI) and Zoos Victoria have again teamed up to track the annual migration of the Bogong Moth to Victoria’s high country.  The moth is an important food source for the endangered Mountain Pygmy-possum.  Members of the public are encouraged to record sightings of the moth and to load photos and locational information into the Moth Tracker web app.  This citizen science will help inform the impact of food scarcity on the declining possum numbers.


The Moth Tracker web app is available through the State Wide Integrated Flora and Fauna Teams (SWIFFT) website:

Decades of Climate Data at NCI to Transform Australian Research.

A veritable time capsule of detailed climate data is now available to Australian climate researchers.  ERA5 has been recognised as a significant reference dataset, and it has been eagerly anticipated by Australian climate researchers.  To unlock its full potential for climate research, ERA5 requires local access that is readily accessible for high-performance computing and data analysis systems.  With supercomputing infrastructure and robust data services, NCI is the ideal location for Australian researchers to collaborate and analyse the ERA5 data.


Read more at:

National Centres NCI and Pawsey Support Critical Research with Next-Generation Supercomputers.

NCI and Pawsey are Australia’s two Tier-1 HPC and HPD centres.  For the 2020 Supercomputing Conference, the centres released an update on some of the key activities and successes of the year.  The overview helped introduce the centres to an international audience, and provide a list of some of the remarkable achievements of this difficult year.


Read more at:

Humans of NCI Showcases Breadth of the Australian Computational Research Community.

Keep an eye on the NCI website for updates to the ongoing Humans of NCI profiles!  Recent updates include Dr Colette Kerry, a researcher in physical oceanography with a lifelong love of the ocean, and Ms Annelisa Stella Rigoni, a PhD student in computational chemistry who has been interested in tiny things ever since she got her first toy microscope at age 6.


Read more at:

New ARDC Investments Boost HASS and Indigenous Research.

The ARDC welcomes a new $8.9 million investment to help provide humanities, arts, social science and Indigenous researchers with easier access to data, analysis and sharing based on FAIR principles.  Read more here:


ARDC will be engaging with key community stakeholders to define structural governance and operational parameters in the coming months.


Please register if you are interested in being part of the consultations, here:

eResearch Jobs.

AeRO provides details of the latest eResearch job opportunities in the sector.  Jobs are posted immediately to, and the website at is also updated.


This is a free service for the whole eResearch community – to advertise a position, simply email


Here are some current vacancies:  Communications and outreach manager, eResearch Software Specialist, Operations Analyst, IS Research Support Officer.


This newsletter is based on contributions provided by members of the eResearch community, and draws on news articles and newsletters published across the sector. The Newsletter is published around the 16th of each month.

Please send any contributions (max. 100 words, plus a link and image) or pointers to any other relevant articles or newsletters to

Archives of these Newsletters are held at
Click HERE to add yourself to the eResearch Mailing List.

—AeRO Newsletter Editor