STRIDE Incubator: Successful Transformation of a Research Idea into Data Engagement

The STRIDE incubator provides a unique opportunity to explore novel data sources and gain and apply programmatic skills to your research. Over the course of six weeks (Aug. 5-September 13)  a cohort of graduate students and postdocs will receiving training and mentorship in skills and tools to advance their individual research projects.  This incubator is intended for researchers who need to acquire programmatic expertise to get new data for their projects, and to clean and organize messy data they already have.  A the end of the incubator participants will have made significant progress on starting a research project and emerge with a strong peer and mentoring network at UC Davis.


• Getting data from API (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, OpenStreetMap, NOAA, Census, etc.)
• Reformatting data: file formats, character encoding
• Cleaning data and exploring data quality
• Organizing data: spreadsheets to databases; setting up reproducible workflows
• Sharing data: documentation and repository

Graduate students and postdocs at UC Davis. Participants commit to attendance in person for four hours a day for the full duration of the incubator.

Submit answers to the following questions to Applications are due by March 8th, 2019.


  1. Your name, department/program affiliation and year you started graduate school or your postdoc position at UC Davis..
  2. A description of your project that explains:
  • What is the question you are trying to answer? Given the timeframe of the incubator, exploratory questions or very narrowly-defined hypotheses are often more suitable candidates than larger, open-ended questions.
  • What data do you need? If you already have the data, explain what prevents you from fully utilizing them.
  • How do you think those data will help you answer your question?
  1.  A review of at least five literature articles from the last 3-5 years describing what research has already been done around your proposed question
  2. An explanation about how your proposal is different from or how it complements the research that has already been done
  3. What  challenges that you anticipate in accomplishing the project with the resources you currently have?
  4. What skills you have to complete the project?
  5. What skills do you hope to gain from the Incubator?

This incubator is modeled after UCLA’s DResSUP program

Date RangeTopics
Aug. 5th-8thDefining your question. Tools for project management (GitHub, OpenScienceFramework). Data management plans and documentation. Peer/cohort learning, finding resources. Individual presentations
Aug. 9th-16thDefining queries. Introduction to R, data structures, API, data formats
Aug. 19th-23rdScripting, data structuring. Working with preliminary data
Aug. 26th-30thData cleaning in OpenRefine. Data exploration in R
Sep. 3rd-6thMapping with QGIS. Working with Inkscape. Independent work
Sep. 9th-13thIndependent work. Final presentations. Program assessment