Already a member?

Sign In
Syndicate content

Digital Repositories

Data-related blog posts coming out of Open Repositories 2012 conference

I 'd been meaning to write an IASSIST blog post about OR 2012, hosted by the University of Edinburgh's Host Organising Committee led by Co-Chair and IASSISTer Stuart Macdonald in July, because it had such good DATA content.

Fortunately Simon Hodson, the UK's JISC Managing Research Data Programme Manager, has provided this introduction and has allowed me to post it here, with further links to his analytic blog posts, and even those contain further links to OTHER blog posts talking about OR2012 and data!

There are also more relevant pointers from the OR 2012 home page here: http://or2012.ed.ac.uk/2012/08/20/another-round-of-highlights/

I think there's enough here to easily keep people going until next year's conference in Prince Edward Island next July. Oh, and Peter Burnhill, Past President IASSIST, made a good plug for IASSIST in his closing keynote, pointing it out to repository professionals as a source of expertise and community for would-be data professionals.

Enjoy! - Robin Rice, University of Edinburgh

---Forward----

It has been widely remarked that OR 2012 saw the arrival of research data in the repository world.  Using a wordle of #or2012 tweets in his closing summary, Peter Burnhill noted that ‘Data is the big arrival. There is a sense in which data is now mainstream.’  (See Peter’s summary on the OR2012 You Tube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jQRDWq-dhc&feature=plcp).

I have written a series of blog posts reflecting on the contributions made by *some* those working on research data repositories, and particularly the development of research data services http://or2012.ed.ac.uk/2012/08/20/another-round-of-highlights/.

These posts may be of interest to subscribers to this list and are listed below.

Institutional Data Repositories and the Curation Hierarchy: reflections on the DCC-ICPSR workshop at OR2012 and the Royal Society’s Science as an Open Enterprise report
http://researchdata.jiscinvolve.org/wp/2012/08/06/institutional-data-repositories-and-the-curation-hierarchy-reflections-on-the-dcc-icpsr-workshop-at-or2012-and-the-royal-societys-science-as-an-open-enterprise-report/

‘Data is now Mainstream’: Research Data Projects at OR2012 (Part 1…)
http://researchdata.jiscinvolve.org/wp/2012/08/13/data-is-now-mainstream-research-data-projects-at-or2012-part-1/

Pulling it all Together: Research Data Projects at OR2012 (Part 2…)
http://researchdata.jiscinvolve.org/wp/2012/08/14/pulling-it-all-together-research-data-projects-at-or2012-part-2/

Making the most of institutional data assets: Research Data Projects at OR2012 (Part 3…)
http://researchdata.jiscinvolve.org/wp/2012/08/15/making-the-most-of-institutional-data-assets-research-data-projects-at-or2012-part-3/

Manage locally, discover (inter-)nationally: research data management lessons from Australia at OR2012
http://researchdata.jiscinvolve.org/wp/2012/08/16/manage-locally-discover-inter-nationally-research-data-management-lessons-from-australia-at-or2012/

Simon Hodson [reposted with permission]

Special IQ: Moving Research Data Into and Out of Institutional Repositories

The IASSIST Quarterly IQ Vol. 31 issue 3&4 is now available on the web:

http://iassistdata.org/publications/iq/iqvol31.html

This issue will only be available on the web. There will be no printed version mailed out to the membership.

This double issue is the work of the authors and their articles are introduced below. We are presenting an integrated double issue of high quality. We should also give a special thanks to the editors of the issue. Gretchen Gano is the writing guest editor of this IQ as you can see below. Gretchen Gano is the Assistant Curator Librarian for Public Administration & Government Information and Coordinator, Data Service Studio at New York University Libraries. Gretchen Gano collaborated on this issue from the start with former IASSIST president Ann Green. Together with the authors a great issue has been made.

Enjoy

Karsten Boye Rasmussen, IQ editor, associate professor, kbr@sam.sdu.dk, Marketing & Management, SDU, University of Southern Denmark +45 6550 2115

Guest Editor's Notes:

The 2008 IASSIST Conference, “Technology of Data: Collection, Communication, Access and Preservation” included a session entitled “Moving Research Data Into and Out of Institutional Repositories” from which several papers emerged. In “Interoperability Between Institutional and Data Repositories: a Pilot Project at MIT”, Katherine McNeill describes a pilot project to enhance study discovery between two repository systems housed in the same institution, DSpace and the Institute for Quantitative Social Science Dataverse Network, by enabling the harvesting and replication of metadata and content across the two systems. In a related project across the pond, Libby Bishop scales this discussion in her description of crossinstitutional collection sharing between the University of Leeds and the UK Data Archive in the Timescapes project. Bishop asserts that coordination among multiple agents is likely to be challenging under any circumstances. Challenges magnify when the trajectories of different life cycles, for research projects and for data sharing, are considered. Robin Rice echoes these sentiments in her article on the DISC-UK DataShare Project, a collaboration between the Universities of Edinburgh, Oxford and Southampton and the London School of Economics. Rice provides visual evidence in a compelling diagram of the data sharing continuum based on storage, discovery, and preservation conditions of the digital research materials at each level along the scale -- from the lowly thumb drive to the officious national archive. We see plainly that as one moves up the continuum, more and more human effort and intervention is required to craft the discovery, access, analytic and preservation environment. In other words, data curators matter.

Two other papers tackle these challenges by emphasizing the needs of data producers. Luis Martinez-Uribe introduces the University of Oxford’s Scoping Digital Repository Services for Research Data Management project and the findings of a requirement gathering exercise. While the study results reveal researchers’ needs and workflows. Martinez-Uribe asserts that the study process itself made an impact on the participants. Study participants reflected on and, as a result, fine-tuned how they work with data, why they create these materials in the first place and were able to articulate reasons for managing these resources the way they do. Similarly, Research Data & Environmental Sciences Librarian, Gail Steinhart, writes about the development of DataStaR, a Data Staging Repository hosted by Cornell University’s Albert R. Mann Library. The project developed as a “managed workspace” where researchers contribute datasets they are still actively using in direct response to questions that have to do with sharing in the active research environment, rather than an archival one.

While the authors in this issue describe projects going on in many different places and settings, taken together, these articles address common themes. All address the challenge of scaling data exchange between systems and then between institutions. This raises the perennial question of standards: by what mechanisms will we set them, and how well will we be able to follow them and still accommodate local needs? The importance of aligning repository services with researcher needs is another common thread. Data managers must ask, “how will the active researcher benefit from curation efforts”? The answer may be that benefit is more than finding or accessing a particular resource (yep, I have downloaded the whole thing and all the bits are there), but instead being able to examine this resource in many ways (okay, lets run frequencies, now I want to see it on a map, and let’s include some other variables). This is a rich reuse experience, creating a real digital “laboratory.”

Finally, each contributor notes the expanding role of data manager. In its own way, each project described here moves data managers upstream, pre-publication, into the place where research is actively happening. Though all of the articles focus on technological choices and architectures to support research data curation, it is striking to realize that each of these choices emerge from old-fashioned personal, social, and organizational relationships. What we can strive for as data and information managers is to work together as fellow researchers and to be ever curious about how these partnerships and the sharing of information back and forth can be enhanced by thoughtful information and technology design. Some call this the digital plumbing, but I like to think of it as e-gilding.

Gretchen Gano, New York University Libraries

Data Seal of Approval

Anyone who archives his or her data also would like them to be found, recognized and still usable in the future. That is not a matter of course with electronic data. After all, hardware and software are changing all the time. Making data future-proof can be accomplished by ensuring that data sets and metadata meet certain guidelines. In consultation with large data producers and managers, DANS laid down what those guidelines need to be in its 'Datakeurmerk', which will continue to be developed further.

Anyone who archives his or her data also would like them to be found, recognized and still usable in the future. That is not a matter of course with electronic data. After all, hardware and software are changing all the time. Making data future-proof can be accomplished by ensuring that data sets and metadata meet certain guidelines. In consultation with large data producers and managers, DANS laid down what those guidelines need to be in its 'Datakeurmerk', which will continue to be developed further.

The quality guidelines of this seal of approval for data are intended to ensure that in the future, research data can still be processed in a high-quality and reliable manner, without this entailing new thresholds, regulations or high costs. They may be of interest to research institutions, to organizations that archive data, and to users of those data. The document that lays down the quality guidelines of the 'Datakeurmerk', can be downloaded at: http://www.datasealofapproval.org

Contact DANS: Dr. Henk Harmsen henk.harmsen at dans.knaw.nl

With regards, Laurents Sesink

Data curation, institutional repositories and e-Research

Luis Martinez-Uribe, Digital Repositories Research Co-ordinator, is based at the Oxford e-Research Centre and will be conducting a scoping study to capture researcher's needs for repository services to manage, curate, preserve and disseminate research data generated in Oxford.

A new blog (http://oxdrrc.blogspot.com/) has been set-up to record the progress of the project while disseminating outputs and information about relevant activities. If you are interested in following the progress of this project you can subscribe to the RSS feed (http://oxdrrc.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default)

posted for Luis by Robin Rice

DDI, institutional repositories, and numeric data mashups

Announcing new deliverables from the DISC-UK DataShare project:

Both briefing papers can be retrieved from http://www.disc-uk.org/deliverables.html .

There is also a new "Collective Intelligence" page with a tag cloud to links from our social bookmarks of reports, websites, and blogs related to the project themes. http://www.disc-uk.org/collective.html

A newsfeed of deliverables and new bookmarks is available from the project blog at http://jisc-datashare.blogspot.com/

Contributed by Robin Rice

DISC-UK DataShare Project for Institutional Data Repositories

As part of the JISC-funded DISC-UK DataShare project in the UK, a State-of-the-Art Review has been written, marking out the current scene on data sharing at the beginning of the project.

Assessment of UKDA and The National Archive (UK) Compliance with OAIS and METS Standards

Interesting report applying the Open Archival Information System (OAIS) model and the Metadata Encoding and Transmission Standard (METS) to the UK Data Archive; a very useful convergence of preservation strategies and articulation of what the model means for data and disciplinary focused digital repositories/archives.Email from the Digital Preservation Department at the UK National Archives:

 

In conjunction with the UK Data Archive, The National Archives have released a report comparing their preservation practices to the leading internationally recognised standard for digital archives. This provides a model for other organisations to test the compliance of their own systems.

 

Using the Open Archival Information System (OAIS) Reference Model the two organisations were able to compare their preservation practices within a common framework: an opportunity that was particularly timely because, in January 2005, the UKDA was appointed as a legal place of deposit for National Archive documents.

 

The OAIS reference model (ISO 14721) is the major international standard addressing the structure and operations of digital archive facilities. The Metadata Encoding and Transmission Standard (METS) is a schema for encoding descriptive, administrative, and structural metadata regarding objects within a digital library.

 

The assessment was carried out by the UKDA, The National Archives and the Estonian Business Archive, with a funding award from the Joint Information Systems Committee - under its Institutional Digital Preservation and Asset Management Programme.

 

Full story: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/news/stories/79.htm

 

The report is available here: http://www.data-archive.ac.uk/news/publications.asp

 

Paper copies are available from the National Archives and from the UK Data Archive.

 

Contact: digital-archive@nationalarchives.gov.uk
or publicity@esds.ac.uk

 

For further information on Digital Preservation at the National Archives, please see: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/preservation/digital.htm

 

Press Enquiries: Contact Stuart Brennan in The National Archives Press Office on 0208 8392 5277 or stuart.brennan@nationalarchives.gov.uk

 

Contributed by Ann Green

ICPSR to Participate in Project to Certify Digital Archives

ICPSR will be taking part in the RLG-NARA Digital Repository Certification project to identify the criteria repositories must meet for reliably storing, migrating, and providing access to digital collections.ICPSR has been selected to serve as a "test subject" in the Center for Research Libraries (CRL) project to develop an audit checklist for certification of trusted digital repositories. Funded by the Mellon Foundation, this project builds on the work of a Task Force consisting of members from the Research Libraries Group (RLG) and the U.S. National Archives and Research Administration (NARA). The Task Force is charged with developing criteria to identify digital repositories capable of reliably storing, migrating, and providing longterm access to digital collections.

RLG has released a draft of the "Audit Checklist for the Certification of Trusted Digital Repositories," which is available at http://www.rlg.org/en/page.php?Page_ID=20769. This represents the fifth generation of the RLG-NARA group’s work and provides best, current practice and thought about the organizational and technical infrastructure required for a digital repository to be considered trustworthy and capable of certification.

Leveraging the RLG-NARA audit tool, the CRL project will test audit criteria and metrics with three test subjects, including:

  • Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR)
  • Koninklijke Bibliotheek National Library of the Netherlands, which maintains the digital archive for Elsevier Science Direct Journals
  • Portico, an archive for electronic journals incubated within Ithaka Harbors, Inc.

Stanford's LOCKSS system will also participate in this effort, which runs through October 2006.

Comments on the draft are welcomed and are due before mid-January 2006 to Robin Dale, the RLG-NARA Task Force Co-chair and project manager: Robin.Dale@rlg.org (+1-650-691-2238).

Contributed by Ann Green

The Practice of User Registration to Access Data

The practice of requiring users to register prior to receiving permission to access data files is increasing among distributors of data. In a message posted on the IASSIST discussion list on September 8, 2005, Libbie Stephenson mentioned various forms of registration employed by data distributors. She has heard it argued that such practices have become barriers to data access and are increasing the cost of research. She asked the IASSIST community if anyone has evidence of registration practices actually increasing the cost of research, whether such costs are related to time, staff, hardware, software or some other aspect of research.
  • IASSIST Quarterly

    Publications Special issue: A pioneer data librarian
    Welcome to the special volume of the IASSIST Quarterly (IQ (37):1-4, 2013). This special issue started as exchange of ideas between Libbie Stephenson and Margaret Adams to collect

    more...

  • Resources

    Resources

    A space for IASSIST members to share professional resources useful to them in their daily work. Also the IASSIST Jobs Repository for an archive of data-related position descriptions. more...

  • community

    • LinkedIn
    • Facebook
    • Twitter

    Find out what IASSISTers are doing in the field and explore other avenues of presentation, communication and discussion via social networking and related online social spaces. more...