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Improving the Interoperability of Established Geochemical Databases

Global geochemical datasets are increasingly used to solve ever more complex research questions exploiting sophisticated computational methods. However, standards to guide geochemical data publication and facilitate uniform access to such large datasets are largely lacking. In their absence, the GEOROC database provides access to a curated compilation of igneous and metamorphic rock and mineral compositions from >20,000 publications. GEOROC is also a major contributor to the EarthChem Portal, a single point of access to six independently curated databases with a common data schema.

Whilst providing findable, accessible and reusable data has been GEOROC’s mission for 23 years, interoperability between geochemical data systems, let alone with other disciplines, remains difficult. To improve the FAIRness of global geochemical data and ensure it can be harvested by other disciplines (e.g. through the NFDI4Earth programme), the field of digital geochemistry first needs to be further developed and strengthened. In collaboration with EarthChem, our DIGIS project is revising the IT infrastructure of the GEOROC database (data model, vocabularies, etc) to enable greater interoperability between the two data systems. For the long-term success of this effort, international stakeholder engagement as well as support by publishers, funders and the international geochemical societies is crucial. Together with EarthChem and other participants of the OneGeochemistry initiative, we are therefore actively engaging with the global geochemistry community to improve data services and to develop community-endorsed best practices for geochemical data publication.


Marthe Klöcking1, Bärbel Sarbas1, Adrian Sturm2, Leander Kallas1, Jan Brase2, Wolfram Horstmann2, Daniel Kurzawe2, Stefan Möller-McNett1, Jens Nieschulze1, Matthias Willbold1, Gerhard Wörner1
1Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Germany; 2Göttingen State and University Library, Germany
GeoMinKöln 2022