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A Tale of Two Eagles: Comparing and Contrasting the Social Science Data Landscapes in the USA and Germany

Presenter 1
Stefan Kramer
German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)
Presenter 2
Denis Huschka
German Data Forum

The landscape of research, resources, involved organizations, and services related to social science data has developed quite differently in the USA and in Germany in the last few decades. For instance, while established (even if still developing) in the USA, the role of a designated “data librarian” in the academic/research environment is something quite new in Germany; while the federal statistical system in the USA is based on the activities of several dozen individual agencies, Germany has a single Federal Statistical Office, along with at least equally important central statistical offices for each of its states; and the practice of conducting a nationwide census of the population is established and largely unchallenged in the USA, but was so controversial in (West) Germany in the 1980s that it would not be undertaken again until 2011. Meanwhile, the ideas and challenges of sharing research data, planning for its management, providing curation services and persistent identifiers at appropriate levels for social science datasets, and developing and sharing best practices increasingly cross national boundaries and provide increasing opportunities for collaboration - between people and institutions in these two nations, and well beyond.

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