Mercè Crosas is Harvard University’s Research Data Officer, with the Office of Vice Provost for Research (OVPR), and Chief Data Science and Technology Officer at Harvard’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science (IQSS).
In her role at OVPR, Dr. Crosas provides leadership to mature Harvard’s data management and governance practices. She works in close collaboration with key constituencies in Research, Information Technology, and the Library to coordinate support for the data lifecycle and guide university policy, process, and procedures for research data. Dr. Crosas brings to this role a wealth of experience in data management architecture and international community data standards as well as the vision to make data more accessible for research while preserving privacy.
At IQSS, Dr. Crosas guides the vision and strategic direction of data sharing and data analysis projects developed at the Institute. She has led the Dataverse project, an open source software platform for sharing and archiving research data, since 2006. She now, also, leads the development of the text analysis tool Consilience, the DataTags project for sharing sensitive data, and supervises the user experience, data curation, and data science services teams.
In the last ten years, Dr. Crosas has been PI and co-PI of multiple research grants and collaborations related to data privacy, data provenance, research reproducibility, and data sharing in social science, biomedicine, and astronomy. She is part of numerous committees and working groups focused on research data management, data citation, and data standards, and is a co-author of the FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable) data principles as well as the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles.
Before re-joining Harvard in 2004, Dr. Crosas worked for six years in the educational software and biotech industries, initially as a software developer, and subsequently as director of the software development team. She contributed to the development of lab information management systems (LIMS) for SNP discovery and genotyping and mass spectrometry. Before that, she spent six years at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, first as a pre-doctoral fellow for her Ph.D. in Astrophysics from Rice University, and later as a post-doctoral fellow, researcher, and software engineer with the Radioastronomy division. There she worked on Monte Carlo simulations of radiative transfer in evolved stars and contributed to the software for the Submillimeter Array interferometer. She earned a B.S. in Physics from the Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.