Council Minutes
March 13-14, 2008

Council present: Francine Berman, Michael Haines, Kathleen Mullan Harris, Aletha Huston (Chair), Jeff Moon, Sam Myers, Ruth Peterson (Past Chair), Lori Weber, Ann Wolpert

ICPSR staff present: George Alter, Rita Bantom, Bryan Beecher, Linda Detterman, Peter Granda, Bree Gunter, Myron Gutmann, Bill Jacoby, Peter Joftis, Stacey Kubitz, Nancy McGovern, James McNally, Mary Morris, JoAnne O'Rourke, Amy Pienta, Mary Vardigan

Visitors present: Kevin Schürer, UK Data Archive; Elaine Kuttner, Cambridge Concord Associates; Pat Mahon, Cambridge Concord Associates

The minutes from the October 2007 Council meeting were approved unanimously.

Director's Report

Membership and Collection Delivery News

The 2007 OR Meeting hosted 181 participants in October, 112 of which were ORs and DRs. 111 different institutions were present, with about one quarter of member institutions represented. Half of those who attended completed the online meeting evaluation; 98 percent indicated that the meeting was worthwhile, and 92 percent indicated their desire to attend future meetings.

There has been a strong trend in membership growth since 2005. There are currently 646 members with new Federations recently formed in Minnesota and Montana.

Regarding outreach activities, ICPSR has attended eight conferences since October and is planning to present at seven more through June. Myron Gutmann distributed a document listing 17 conference presentations by staff and eight new publications since October. Gutmann also reported that the Undergraduate Paper Competition is underway.

The beta version of the Online Learning Center recently launched, with the full launch expected in June or July 2008. When fully populated, the site will provide a series of 150 data-driven learning guides, and ICPSR will be able to report on utilization of the site by quantitatively measuring student and faculty use. Several other new websites have also launched since October, including the PK-3 Resource Center, a workshop on Historical Demography for the Summer Program, a new DataPASS site, a new Summer Program site, a new SAMHDA site, and the International Resource Center, a site that uses Flash technology to allow searches for international data by geographic location.

Myron Gutmann presented figures for data disseminated and datasets downloaded; the figures through the end of the 2008 fiscal year were estimated. Council discussed the difference between counting downloads versus counting sessions and tabulations. The online bibliography had 250,457 hits during the first eight months of the 2008 fiscal year, with 46,097 unique visitors.

Collection Development News

The Health and Medical Archive recently signed a new five-year agreement with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and NACJD has taken over the distribution of the Federal Justice Statistics Data Program.

Several datasets have been added to the collection since October, including the Child Care and Development Fund Administrative Data for 2005, the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) for 2006, County Characteristics (2000-2007), and the National Health Interview Survey (2006).

Four new grants have been funded since October:

  • Digital Preservation Management (Nancy McGovern, NEH)
  • Archiving the Americans' Changing Lives Study (James McNally, NIA)
  • Archiving the NICHD Study of Early Child Care at ICPSR (Amy Pienta, RTI-NICHD)
  • Health and Medical Care Archive (Peter Granda, RWJ)

And several proposals are currently under review:

  • NSF INTEROP: Collaborative Tagging (NSF)
  • NSF CI-TEAM: Collaborative Tagging (NSF) Infusing Quantitative Literacy Throughout the Social Science Curriculum (NSF)
  • Rescuing and Archiving Social Science Data (IMLS)
  • Epidemiology of Functional Status in Elderly Hispanics (NIA)
  • Social Science, Biomedical, Environmental DataNet submission
  • World Population Data Network DataNet submission

Computing and Preservation News

There is a new joint project with ISR Survey Research Operations to produce and edit variable-level metadata for surveys, and there has been progress on the development of a system to edit metadata at the study level. The current ICPSR metadata descriptions are being reformatted, and Council discussed whether it would be possible to create classifications of study numbers. Kevin Schürer suggested that ICPSR think about a European-North American summit to discuss common areas of study classification.

The Digital Preservation Tutorial website has moved to the University of Michigan from Cornell University and was recently translated into Italian. A Digital Preservation Workshop Program has been funded by NEH, and preservation curriculum and outputs have been adopted by several international data archives.

ICPSR has established the position of Registrar at ICPSR to audit and track core digital preservation requirements. An additional replica of ICPSR holdings was recently established at Indiana University, and ICPSR is currently investigating Fedora as a partner in a future repository venture.

Almost all of the data at ICPSR that have been stored on 9-track tapes, IBM tape cartridges, and DLT tapes have been copied to spinning disk. ICPSR recently decided to move paper administrative files, study files, and codebooks to a storage facility called Iron Mountain, a move from the current warehouse storage facility that will save ICPSR $35,000 annually. The move will take place this summer.

Summer Program News

Enrollment for the Summer Program began February 20. The core curriculum is similar to previous years, but courses in the following subjects have been added:

  • Introduction to Applied Bayesian Modeling
  • Advanced Topics in Bayesian Methods
  • Scaling Methods
  • Network Analysis: Accelerated
  • Introduction to Applied Bayesian Statistics for Social Scientists
  • Analyzing Multilevel and Mixed Models using Stata
  • Panel Data Analysis using Stata

Several new faculty have been added to the faculty to teach the courses in Bayesian methods.

Other new workshops include:

  • Integrating Biomarkers into Population-Based Research
  • Respondent Confidentiality Protection and Disclosure Review: Practical Tools for Researchers
  • Project of Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods
  • Examining Child Outcomes and Well-being in Early Care and Education Settings
  • Welfare, Children, and Families: A Three-City Study
  • Using Secondary Data for Analysis of Marriage and Family

Budget Report

ICPSR Finance Director Stacey Kubitz began the presentation with an overview of revenues and expenses at ICPSR, highlighting two caveats (indirect cost and Computer Recharge revenues are counted twice). She then described how the major categories of revenues - member dues, grants & contracts, indirect cost recovery - are used at ICPSR, and also enumerated the remaining categories of revenue: Summer Program frees, "investment" income, DDI Alliance fees, and the Computer Recharge fees.

Kubitz then presented an overview of the budget process and outlined some general principles: staff stability is essential; member fees grow very little; indirect cost recovery cannot support core services, only infrastructure; and annual growth in reserves is among our goals.

Generally, ICPSR identifies a small number of major initiatives we want to undertake in a given fiscal year. In FY08 we focused on strategic planning development.

The organization decides upon strategic goals in November and December, and then firms up staffing plans between December and February. In February and March non-personnel budgets are set, and staff then present this budget to Council in March. From April through June staff adjust and finalize the budget, and then send to Council for review and approval.

Kubitz then provided budget numbers for the current fiscal year and the next fiscal year. The FY08 budget was $16K revenues over expenses, but Kubitz projects an increase to $84K revenues over expenses by the end of the fiscal year. This would result in $3.35 million in reserves, not including the Perry II loan, which would add another $293K.

The FY09 draft budget is currently $300K expenses over revenues, but Kubitz noted that this number will shrink between now and final budget presented in June. Kubitz noted four priorities for FY09 (all tied to the strategic plan): technology development; membership expansion and outreach; diversity leadership; and international outreach.

Kubitz concluded the presentation with a series of timeline slides that demonstrated that both revenues and expenses have increased sharply since 2000, and that the majority of the increase in revenue is due to a growth in government grants and contracts.

Strategic Plan Discussion

Council Chair Aletha Huston posed a question raised during the Council's Executive Session: How will ICPSR measure success of the Strategic Plan?

Elaine Kuttner pointed out that the plan is meant to provide an overarching trajectory for the organization and a strategy to get there. This is a strong plan and it will improve as the organization works with it. The next step is to develop an implementation plan, and questions of structure and governance follow from assessment of the needs of the plan. The most important question now is: Is this where you want to go?

Myron Gutmann pointed out that Strategic Direction III is not just a commitment to research, but also advocates broadening our scope to new scientific domains. This creates a need for partnerships. The Council noted that the boundaries of scientific communities are changing and that ICPSR is already engaging multiple audiences.

The Council discussed the role of ethical behavior in the plan. Ann Wolpert and Lori Weber pointed out that Strategic Direction I begins with broad goals but focuses on a narrow issue (ethical behavior with respect to protecting confidentiality of research participants). Council agreed that ICPSR should protect the integrity of social science research in general.

Gutmann observed that the discussion raised the issue to a larger level. He suggested that the Council approve the intent of the plan and leave the wording to ICPSR staff.

Gutmann reported that discussions about implementation of the strategic plan are just beginning. Francine Berman emphasized that metrics of success need to drive the implementation plan, and she called for a focus on leadership and not just participation.

Council members commented on the need to keep the strategic plan alive and relevant in the future. Gutmann promised that the strategic plan will be re-examined and adjusted constantly. According to Kuttner, in mature organizations the plan becomes a framework for committees and reports. The plan needs to be embedded in the way the organization works. The discussion turned to ways that the Strategic Plan can be embedded in Council meetings by making it the focus of the Director's Report and the subject of committee discussions.

The Council voted unanimously to approve the Strategic Plan with the understanding that some wording changes will be made by staff.

The Council stressed the importance of Strategic Direction I, because it shapes the other strategic directions. Several areas of ICPSR leadership were raised, such as data science and helping to shape IRB policy. Gutmann raised the possibility of ICPSR-sponsored forums on important topics in years that do not have OR meetings.

At the June meeting, Gutmann and the staff will present the implementation plan, and the Strategic Plan will be integrated into all staff reports. The Council will hold an extended discussion of Strategic Direction I with a focus on what leadership will require from both the staff and Council. The Council will discuss the organization and structure needed to accomplish the Strategic Plan at a later meeting.

Budget and Policy Committee

Council: Francine Berman, Michael Haines, Aletha Huston (Chair), Jeff Moon, Sam Myers, Ruth Peterson, Ann Wolpert

Staff: JD Alford, Rita Bantom, Myron Gutmann, Stacey Kubitz

FY2008 Year End Projection

In its June 2007 meeting, Council approved a $16K gain for the organization's FY2008 budget. As of March 2008, staff was pleased to report they were projecting an $84K gain for FY2008. Staff were careful to point out that the Summer Program revenues are uncertain at this point. Based on current year end projects, the organization's all-funds reserves would be approximately $3.5 million as of June 30, 2008 (not including the $293K Perry II loan repayments).

FY2009 Draft Budget

The committee did not spend much time discussing the draft FY2009 budget because staff planned to present better information and numbers at the June 2009 Council meeting. One Council member recommended that staff revise the graph on page 15 to break out true research from the organization's core research. This will be done for the June 2008 meeting. The proposed change will better illustrate the rate of growth within both types of sponsored activity.

Updating ICPSR's Policy on Indirect Costs and Sabbatical Credits

The committee discussed the current indirect cost retention policy for those who do research and the challenges the policy creates for the organization. Gutmann requested Council's authorization to begin the process of establishing a new policy. Council agreed and will expect a proposal and transition plan from Gutmann and staff at the October 2008 meeting. The changes in policy are expected to have a financial impact during the 2010 fiscal year.

Council members encouraged staff to review similar policies at institutions such as RAND, the Minnesota Population Center, and other research universities.

Strategic Plan Development

Since the March 2008 plenary sessions were dedicated to discussing the Strategic Plan, the committee did not spend much time on it during the committee meeting. Some topics that were discussed included: using committee report structure to communicate progress toward the plan's goals, establishing metrics to measure progress toward the goals, and creating a list of what activities the organization will minimize or eliminate in order to move forward on the strategic plan. In June staff will provide a revised Proposed Action Steps report that outlines how the organization plans to achieve each of the strategic directions.

Personnel Issues and Progress on Strategic Plan Direction

Staff directed Council to read the update on personnel matters in the briefing book. Gutmann shared with the committee that ICPSR management is still committed to recruiting leadership for the MDRC and related activities. He will report more information about this recruitment as it becomes available.

The Council briefing book included a document outlining the organization's efforts toward the Strategic Plan's Direction 5 aimed at improving the work environment. Council members were encouraged to read the document for details.

Collection Development Committee

Council: Kathleen Mullan Harris, Lori Weber

Staff: George Alter, Peter Granda, Amy Pienta, JoAnne O'Rourke

Visitor: Kevin Schürer

Description of Current Activities in Collection Development Unit

Staff presented a summary of issues that were discussed at Committee meetings in 2007. These included the online data deposit form, copyright policies, the Publications-Related Archive (PRA), geospatial data, confidentiality training, and a few additional issues. The Committee suggested that staff continue to work with depositors regarding acceptable formats of files that they send to us as the online form continues to evolve.

Committee members supported the steps undertaken and contemplated to increase the awareness of confidentiality issues throughout the organization. Staff mentioned that it was studying a model developed by the National Opinion Research Center to store and process all data files in a highly secure environment.

Data Formats and Digital Geospatial Data

The Committee discussed how ICPSR would deal with the increasing array of formats in which data are being prepared, including relational databases and geospatial vector data (shapefiles). Cedrick Heraux of the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD) provided an overview of the lifecycle of digital geospatial data and what steps NACJD has taken so far in dealing with these data. NACJD has been instructed by their sponsors to archive geospatial files and has begun to develop procedures to do so. Recommendations that NACJD has put forth so far include instructions to depositors to provide data in either ESRI, MapInfo, or GML format with all corresponding files associated with each data layer as well as all layers associated with each visualization. Depositors should also follow either Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) or ISO standards when preparing metadata. NACJD also recommends that ICPSR use DDI 3.0 to preserve the basic elements of digital geospatial data files so that they can be imported into various software packages in the future.

Committee members suggested that staff move forward to develop a policy about geospatial data as other areas of the Collection Development unit gain experience with such files.

Data Depositors and Informed Consent

Amy Pienta led a discussion on informed consent. At Council's request last year, ICPSR drafted a report and proposed to add content to the website that would help researchers to prepare informed consent statements. Examples of informed consent statements have been collected and will be shared with the University of Michigan IRB and General Counsel's Office, if necessary, before any recommendations are finalized.

Staff also plans to encourage depositors to provide us with their IRB approvals and informed consent forms, if they have them, but not require them to do so when they deposit data collections with us.

Membership and Marketing Committee

Council: Jeff Moon, Sam Myers (Chair)

Staff: Bree Gunter, Linda Detterman, Mary Morris

Membership Activity and Utilization Reports

Since July 1, 2007, 53 new members have joined ICPSR. Many of these are at the BA and Associate levels and a large number are additions to existing national memberships. Linda Detterman indicated that given the type of new joins it is possible these institutions might drop in and out of membership over the years. There was some discussion of federations and how that membership model could increase membership in some nontraditional markets such as community colleges while at the same time reducing the administrative burden on ICPSR in terms of marketing, invoicing, etc. Council members want to focus on the federation model during the June committee meeting.

Discussion of membership activities prompted questions about retention efforts and the general observation that membership dues account for less than one-third of the overall ICPSR budget. The question was asked whether ICPSR is too dependent on a few select staff to generate the large amount of research related income. Myron Gutmann indicated that the ICPSR business model consists of four components, membership, services, research, and training. The services component consists of sponsored research that supports various topical archives. Many of those archives, particularly aging and criminal justice, have a long track record of funding and provide a steady source of income for the Consortium. To clarify sources of income, future trend line charts could show membership, sponsored activities, and research activity, rather than just membership and grants and contracts.

Membership and Marketing Initiatives Update

The Data User Help Center was launched in December. User Support staff considered the most frequent questions posed by users and developed tutorials to answer those very questions. Currently tutorials are available to help users read/import ASCII data files into statistical packages where setup files exist, create MyData accounts, and use online analysis software. Committee members inquired about metrics for assessing the successfulness of these tutorials and provided some suggestions.

Retaining members at the Extensive and Intensive levels is important to our membership base and for maintaining our funding level. Staff reviewed utilization statistics and targeted special mailings for about 40 institutions in those categories whose usage statistics were lower than desired. The mailing included the ICPSR Media Kit which provides materials and information on publicizing ICPSR resources.

Product development activities centered on the January soft launch of the Online Learning Center. Although useful and appropriate for all members, the OLC is being developed primarily for teaching faculty at the BA institutions and could well be an attraction for community college memberships.

Detterman updated the committee members on OR tools, specifically the utilization tools on the OR site, the Media Kits, and the OR Blog.

2007 OR Meeting Review

Staff reviewed the statistics and evaluations for the 2007 OR Meeting. Eighteen more OR/DRs attended the 2007 meeting than the 2005 meeting and evaluations were very positive. The budget was approximately $84,000 and 24 percent of paying institutions sent representatives to the meeting. The discussion centered on the question of whether the meeting, in its current form and representing 24 percent of our paying institutions, is the preferred method for interacting with our members or whether there is some other avenue we should be pursuing. Committee members favored the status quo for 2009. Detterman plans an OR survey in the spring regarding the 2009 OR Meeting and will bring those results to the June committee meeting. Absent survey response data to the contrary, the 2009 OR meeting will go forward.

Preservation and Access Committee

Council: Francine Berman, Kathleen Mullan Harris (Chair), Ann Wolpert

Staff: Bryan Beecher, Nancy McGovern, Mary Vardigan

Visitor: Kevin Schürer

Digital Preservation Policy

The Preservation Policy Framework, created by Digital Preservation Officer Nancy McGovern, was approved in June 2007 by Council. The Framework reflects community standards, and McGovern has begun to push it out to the community in presentations so that organizations can adopt the format and not have to create one from scratch. The Koninklijke Bibliotheek, National Library of the Netherlands, has announced that they will be using the format.

Policy creation is an area in which ICPSR can take leadership in accord with Strategic Plan Direction I, which emphasizes leadership activities. Related to this, ICPSR has joined the Digital Library Federation as an Allied Member and is also joining the Digital Preservation Coalition. These efforts help to raise ICPSR's profile in the digital preservation community.

It was suggested that ICPSR have a discussion with the SBE Directorate at NSF about digital preservation. The NSF community is concerned with starting creative projects and sunsetting them, and there needs to be a handoff for preservation. At the University of Michigan, ICPSR is positioning itself to play a data stewardship role for the whole campus, and we are working collaboratively with Deep Blue, the U-M institutional repository, to take responsibility for data deposited on campus.

Digital Assets

Bryan Beecher, Director of Computer and Network Services, has been involved in the operational side of preservation. His group has moved data from tape to disk and has replicated copies outside of Ann Arbor with the San Diego Supercomputer Center as part of the Chronopolis Project; in Boulder, CO; in Bloomington, Indiana, at Indiana University; and in the near future in College Park, MD.

A question was raised about acceptable data loss over generations of technology and how we would define loss (that is, if column binary data still exist but cannot be read, are they lost?). Talking about loss in the archival community could be a leadership area, but we want to be sure that we know what we would do with this information about loss.

It could be that authenticity is actually more important than loss. How do we document in a standard way what has been done to transform data and to add value? Staff at ICPSR are focused on establishing a chain of custody for all data deposits so that they are tracked as they travel through the system and their transformations are documented.

Paper Documentation

ICPSR is in the process of recycling paper that we do not need to preserve (like printouts of files) and has decided to contract with Iron Mountain, a records management company, to store what remains of the paper in a climate-controlled facility.

Warm Back-up of Web Site

Because a "hot" back-up (a secondary site that immediately goes live in the event of a primary website failure) is very expensive and a "cold" back-up very slow to put into production, ICPSR has opted for a warm back-up approach. We are ready to ship a copy of the warm back-up to the University of Minnesota and may locate a copy in the UK as well.

Authentication and Authorization

ICPSR has historically performed authentication and authorization by IP address, but since June 2007 we have used an approach that authenticates the individual's identity through the MyData account, rather than identifying the institution through IP. This is in anticipation of a possible move to Shibboleth, the open-source single sign-on middleware that is being developed by Internet2. The Council of European Social Science Data Archive in Europe are implementing Shibboleth, so ICPSR is positioning itself to possibly do the same at some point. Council members indicated that their campuses have not yet settled on a response to Shibboleth, although a single sign-on is desirable. There are concerns about privacy and the possibility of identifying individuals with Shibboleth.

ICPSR Web Site Updates

Council expressed views about the future of the ICPSR website and changes to ICPSR's business model -- in particular, ICPSR's deployment of Web 2.0 features and Web services. For many years, the ICPSR business model has focused on ICPSR's making data available for download by the community. Adopting these new features and services would change the model by encouraging community input and by making it possible for others to develop software based on ICPSR metadata, which could result in alternatives to the download mechanism.

Council cautioned that some Web 2.0 sites built to foster community have not worked out because people were not willing to share ideas related to their research, so this is something we need to take into consideration. Academic communities differ with respect to sharing information – for example, the physics and astronomy communities are open about sharing while the life sciences are not. ICPSR should probably start small with a pilot project, possibly using the "sandbox" environment it has recently set up for development and testing of new projects. It was pointed out that Web services would put ICPSR in a leadership position, and we want to make sure we are monitoring and participating in such activities so that we are not left behind.

Digital Preservation Tutorial

The Digital Preservation Tutorial, developed by Nancy McGovern and others at Cornell University Library with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, is now hosted and maintained by ICPSR. This tutorial won the 2004 SAA Preservation Publication Award and has been translated into French and other languages.

Changes to ICPSR Terms of Use

Council reviewed the changes and pointed out that we need to provide language about the consequences for violation of the terms of use. Staff will add a link to the FAQ on possible sanctions.

Training and Instruction Committee

Council: Michael Haines (Chair), Aletha Huston, Ruth Peterson, Lori Weber

Staff: Bill Jacoby

2008 Summer Program Courses

The committee examined the course list for the 2008 ICPSR Summer Program. Questions were raised about how new course topics were determined and whether there is a formal "tryout" period for new classes. New courses generally are developed through suggestions from the Summer Program Advisory Committee and also on the basis of input from the broader scholarly community in the social sciences. New courses are generally given at least a couple of years to develop a constituency. However, there is no formally designated tryout period.

The committee expressed general support for workshops focusing on the use of complex datasets, and also asked about the audience for introductory-level courses in the Summer Program. The lower-level classes are always quite large and they draw from very heterogeneous constituencies.

Summer Program Fees and Stipends

There was a general discussion about the new fee structure for the Summer Program. Committee members believe that the early enrollment figures are encouraging. However, they recognized that comparisons to figures from earlier years are difficult because the number of current enrollments will inevitably decline somewhat, due to nonpayment, no-shows, and so on.

In response to the committee's request, staff provided information about past Summer Program enrollments, diversity among Summer Program faculty, and OR stipend allocations to member institutions. There was a general discussion about the Member Institution Participation (MIP) stipends that ICPSR Official Representatives distribute to Summer Program participants at their home institutions. Given the administrative difficulties involved in disbursement, and the generally small monetary value of the stipends, several committee members raised the possibility of eliminating the MIP stipends at some point in the future. The committee decided that further information must be collected before taking that step. The committee requested that the Summer Program provide the committee with information about which institutions used the stipends and the amounts allocated over the three preceding years. This will be used at the next committee meeting in order to prepare a recommendation to the Council about the future of the MIP stipends.

Recruitment and Marketing Initiatives

The committee reviewed Summer Program marketing initiatives and discussed possible strategies for evaluating their effectiveness. The latter include surveys (of instructors, participants, and the advisors from participants' home institutions) and counts of website hits.

The committee discussed recruitment of participants and instructional staff, focusing particularly on underrepresented groups. The possibility of seeking private support for minority participants was raised, along with ideas about reallocating MIP stipend funds to scholarships. Committee members expressed the importance of identifying scholars from underrepresented groups who are also effective teachers. The committee recognizes that pre-tenure scholars often have many demands on their time, and that makes it difficult to recruit them as Summer Program faculty. A question was raised about minority instructors' teaching interests, and whether they preferred to concentrate on course topics related to underrepresented groups. That does not appear to be the case, as instructors of color are involved in a number of the statistical lectures and workshops, as well as the substantive workshops.

Council recommended considering whether the Training and Instruction Committee should incorporate other areas now being handled by other committees (such as the Online Learning Center). Council also recommended that ICPSR educational activities should be extended into social scientific fields that have not been represented very heavily in traditional Summer Program constituencies (such as education and psychology), and also into entirely new fields, such as engineering.

Open Session

Aletha Huston began the Open Session by expressing appreciation to ICPSR staff for being an interesting and fun group with whom Council enjoys working and for being responsive to the queries and requests of the Council members.

Kevin Schürer, Director of the UK Data Archive and current head of the Council of European Social Science Data Archive, made a few observations on the meeting as a familiar visitor to Council. He characterized the meeting as an opportunity to summarize recent activities for new Council members and to take stock as ICPSR moves forward. He noted that the awareness raising that took place during the March Council meeting laid the groundwork for future action items that will be informed by the ICPSR Strategic Plan that Council just approved. He emphasized the need and the opportunity for international synergies and observed that the UK Data Archive and ICPSR are both increasingly functioning on an international, multidisciplinary stage.

Huston continued her summary by describing ICPSR as a wonderful organization. She conveyed a message from the Executive Session that Council strongly supports the staff, management, skills, and talent of ICPSR to move forward and use the Strategic Plan as a framework. She expressed the Council's enthusiasm about the Strategic Plan as we think about goals and objectives for next steps and confirmed a commitment to the transparency in operations that ICPSR has embraced. The Council identified no problems or current concerns.

Huston concluded with some thank you's. On behalf of Council, she congratulated Bree Gunter on her upcoming Peace Corps assignment and thanked her for seven years of impressive service to Council. The Council also acknowledged the good service of several staff members who took on additional duties while other staff members were away, e.g., JD Alford, who stepped in during Stacey Kubitz's absence.

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