For Concordance in Macro-historical Datasets - Notes

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Action Items

1. Engage Research Data Alliance for networking, intellectual support, and ideas for future funding. Point Person: Manfred. Time frame: once “white paper” comes out

2. Explore coordinating SFI data set with Seshat. Point Persons: Paula, Rob, Kevin, Peter T. Time frame: immediate.

3. Explore using Outline of Cultural Materials as a general thesaurus for tagging variables to provide rapid connections between datasets. Point Persons: Carol, Kevin. Time frame: immediate.

4. Correct and edit the meta-model and prepare for publication. Point Persons: Peter P., Kevin. Time frame: immediate.

5. Prepare publications

A. White paper: “grand challenges” for macrohistory; data sets that exist; challenges on the technical side integrating these data [Cliodynamics, Digital Antiquity] Point Persons: Peter P., Peter T., Manfred. Time frame: immediate.

B. Technical paper: technical details of Seshat with examples; but need evidence that it works. Point Persons: Rob, Kevin. Time frame: after initial release and findings.

C. High-impact paper “Comparative Studies on Steroids”. Point Persons: Peter T. Time frame: later.

6. Policy for internal versus external access, incl. copyright and use controls (e.g. controlling number of words with external access; images; maps). Clear attribution for data and sources. Permissions for data that are made publically available and indemnification statement. Point Persons: Pieter F., Dan H. Time frame: later.

7. Funding: 5-10 year (2025) period of support for development and implementation of Seshat. Proposal preparation beginning 2016.

A. Data acquisition and research: private individuals and foundations. (i)focus on “big questions”: Templeton Foundation; (ii) focus on disease: Wellcome Trust, Gates Foundation; (iii) focus on social inequality and conflict: H.F. Guggenheim; MINERVA.

B. Technical and infrastructure: NSF; Horizon 2020; Mellon Foundation; Max Planck Institute

Potential research areas for future grants:

(i)Disease, epidemics: What conditions allow disease to become epidemic?; What are the impacts of disease on human societies?; What provides societies resilience to disease?; What is the relationship between disease and conflict?; What role has disease played in shaping human history?

(ii) Social inequality and conflict.