Palaeo-sea-level and palaeo-ice-sheet databases: problems, strategies, and perspectives. Düsterhus, A., Rovere, A., Carlson, A., E., Horton, B., P., Klemann, V., Tarasov, L., Barlow, N., L., M., Bradwell, T., Clark, J., Dutton, A., Gehrels, W., R., Hibbert, F., D., Hijma, M., P., Khan, N., Kopp, R., E., Sivan, D., & Törnqvist, T., E. Climate of the Past, 12(4):911-921, 2016.
Palaeo-sea-level and palaeo-ice-sheet databases: problems, strategies, and perspectives [pdf]Paper  Palaeo-sea-level and palaeo-ice-sheet databases: problems, strategies, and perspectives [link]Website  doi  abstract   bibtex   

Sea-level and ice-sheet databases have driven numerous advances in understanding the Earth system. We describe the challenges and offer best strategies that can be adopted to build self-consistent and standardised databases of geological and geochemical information used to archive palaeo-sea-levels and palaeo-ice-sheets. There are three phases in the development of a database: (i) measurement, (ii) interpretation, and (iii) database creation. Measurement should include the objective description of the position and age of a sample, description of associated geological features, and quantification of uncertainties. Interpretation of the sample may have a subjective component, but it should always include uncertainties and alternative or contrasting interpretations, with any exclusion of existing interpretations requiring a full justification. During the creation of a database, an approach based on accessibility, transparency, trust, availability, continuity, completeness, and communication of content (ATTAC3) must be adopted. It is essential to consider the community that creates and benefits from a database. We conclude that funding agencies should not only consider the creation of original data in specific research-question-oriented projects, but also include the possibility of using part of the funding for IT-related and database creation tasks, which are essential to guarantee accessibility and maintenance of the collected data.

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