What we do

At Openscapes, we champion open practices in environmental science to help uncover data-driven solutions faster. Regardless of research question, environmental scientists are united by the need to analyze data — and to do so in a way that is efficient, reproducible, and easily communicated. With tools specifically created to meet modern demands for collaborative data science, we help create a positive open culture to enable better science in less time. Here’s how:


We build awareness and excitement. We engage scientists with the possibilities of open data science with empathy, art, and storytelling, using narratives like our own path to better science in less time.


We help build confidence and skills. We empower scientists by connecting them with existing open software and communities that meet them where they are so they can develop the skills they need.


We build champions and communities. We amplify scientists’ efforts through academic seminars as well as blogs and social media to increase the visibility of open practices on campus and online.

Champions Program

Openscapes Champions is a mentorship program that empowers science teams with open data science tools and grows the community of practice in the research group, organization, and beyond. Read how the 2019 Openscapes Champions have supercharged their research, and contact us about participating in the Champions program.

Operated by NCEAS and incubated by Mozilla

Openscapes bridges environmental synthesis science with the open movement. Learn more about us.


From our blog

Blog posts are both Openscapes stories and advice snippets for the community. Some are cross-posted on Medium.com. Also, see our media page for media, presentation slide decks, and publications.

Automated reporting in Tampa Bay with open science

By Marcus Beck on November 16, 2020

This is a guest blog by Marcus Beck that describes how the Tampa Bay Estuary Program (TBEP) is embracing open science principles and tools to create better science in less time. Marcus, along with TBEP Executive Director Ed Sherwood, both attended the NCEAS Open Science for Synthesis workshop in July 2017 at Santa Barbara. Marcus, Ed, and the rest of the TBEP team are working to bring open science to improve the management of Tampa Bay and extend their applications to the broader network of the 28 National Estuary Programs.

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Tidy data for efficiency, reproducibility, and collaboration

By Julie Lowndes and Allison Horst on October 12, 2020

This illustrated series was a collaboration between Julie and Allison, who like to talk endlessly about data, code, teaching, open science, and art. We’ve been collaborating since the beginnings of Openscapes: Allison created all artwork for the Openscapes website and slides and was part of the inaugural Champions cohort. Here, we wanted these illustrations to tell a story about why tidy data is so powerful for efficiency, repeatability, and collaboration, but also stand alone to be most flexible for teaching.

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Advising the future of Openscapes

By Advisory Group on September 30, 2020

Cross-posted: Mozilla, NCEAS In August Openscapes held an advisory meeting, made possible with support from Mozilla. This event remotely convened a wide spectrum of biomedical open data science leaders to discuss how Openscapes could meet biomedical community needs. Openscapes’ roots are in environmental science but there has been increasing interest in becoming involved from the biomedical communities as well. This event started the conversation on topics we should consider to serve and strengthen biomedical and other communities more broadly.

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Data Science as an Entryway to Open Publishing

By Julia Lowndes and Nicholas Tierney on August 25, 2020

In May 2020 we presented a virtual fireside chat at the Open Publishing Fest called “Data Science as an Entryway to Open Publishing”. The premise was that the open source R programming language is a powerhouse for data analysis and statistics – and it also is fueling open publishing through R Markdown and a large, engaged, and innovative community. We briefly showed community-created examples of tutorials, blogs, websites, manuscripts, books, etc, and discussed how they are an entryway to open science, preprints, and open scientific publishing.

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