Saturday, 28 June 2008

My Faves for Friday, June 27, 2008

As promised, SHERPA's Juliette service (compliments Romeo) now lists and rates the open access policies of research funders (UK and beyond) not only for peer reviewed outputs but for research data. Policies are given a pass-fail rating based on the following criteria: 1) Data archiving is required. 2) Data must be deposited within five years.

[tags: open access, research data, guidelines, service]

A pre-print article for Library Trends, this is a no-holds barred critique of institutional repository politics, software, usage statistics, utility (from the researcher's point of view), and of the library establishment for not providing enough support and training to make them work, from the point of view of a fed-up IR manager from the University of Wisconsin. Very insightful, with colourful language, as the title suggests. (Thanks, Ann for the link!)

[tags: institutional repositories, open access, open source, training, articles, libraries]

Interesting item about how the volume of generated astronomy data has surpassed the ability of scientists to analyse it, and so how they have enlisted the public (amateur astronomers) to help.

[tags: blogs, data curation, large scale data, open data]

See the rest of my Faves at Faves

Friday, 27 June 2008

DISC-UK goes to Silicon Valley for IASSIST 08

Four members of the DataShare team were among the 233 delegates at the 2008 conference of the International Association for Information Service and Technology, held at Stanford University, with the theme Technology of Data: Collection, Communication, Access and Preservation.

This theme, chosen to reflect the location in Silicon Valley addressed how technology can affect aspects of data stewardship throughout the data lifecycle. The methods and mediums by which data are collected, shared, analyzed and saved are ever-changing, from punch cards and legal pads to online-surveys and tag clouds. There has been an explosion of data sources and topics; vast changes in compilation and dissemination methods; increasing awareness about access and associated licensing and privacy issues; and growing concern about the safeguarding and protection of valuable data resources for future use.

Three DISC-UK members presented papers, and all were very well received.

Robin Rice presented DataShare in the session Research Data Into and Out of Institutional Repositories alongside speakers from Cornell, UKDA and MIT. The panellists presented their specific projects and talked about how they are managing issues of participation, data sharing, data life cycle planning, and dealing with various access and dissemination requirements. Whilst there were many papers at the conference about data sharing and the DDI, this was the only session specifically discussing institutional repositories.

Tanvi Desai (far right) presented a paper The Development of Remote Access Systems in the session Data Security and Access: Connecting from Afar (chaired by myself, centre left). Her paper outlined the development of remote access systems, in particular for access to microdata, then looked at the types of remote access solution in use today by various data providers internationally. She assessed the strengths and weaknesses of each system in terms of ease of use, data quality, data accessibility, data security, and the support burden on the data provider.

In the session Tools for Data Visualization and Manipulation, Stuart Macdonald (far left) discussed a range of collaborative web utilities which use Web2.0 technologies to venture into the numeric and spatial data visualisation arenas. He described and compared a number of utilities such as Swivel, Many Eyes, GeoCommons and MapTube that to varying degrees visualise data and allow data users the opportunity to interact with and share data in an open environment.

Some of us have noticed that, at each year’s conference, there have been progressively fewer presentations about actual data – new or interesting data sources, examples of data use and research results. We were reminded that traditionally there were three main strands in the conference papers – documentation, technology, data, but this year’s offerings were almost entirely in the first two. However, Celia Russell from MIMAS redressed the balance somewhat with an excellent session on Innovation in the Use of International Data for Teaching and Learning. Many of us are hoping for a better balance next year, when the conference will be held in Tampere, Finland.

[See for links to presentations described above.]

Jane Roberts

My Faves for Thursday, June 26, 2008

PANGAEA - Publishing Network for Geoscientific & Environmental Data is an Open Access library aimed at archiving, publishing and distributing georeferenced data from earth system research. Most of the data are freely available and can be used by referencing the related publication or the dataset citation. The data description (metadata) of all data sets are visible and include the principle investigators (PI) name and email for contact.

[tags: research data, open access]

DReSNet iproposes to increase the interaction and cooperation between researchers and practitioners in e-Science and Digital Repositories. Activities, aims and objectives are clearly articulated.

[tags: repositories, data]

See the rest of my Faves at Faves

Thursday, 19 June 2008

Anonymity and consent

On Tuesday 17th June I attended a RELU / UK Data Archive workshop at the University of Edinburgh on managing and sharing research data. The workshop addressed issues surrounding confidential research information and personal data; developing consent agreements; anonymisation techniques and access regulations to enable use and sharing of research data. It was apparent that there were no real broadbrush solutions to anonymisation, consent, sharing issues in the social sciences and that each data set, each audience, each set of participants have to be looked at in turn to determine optimal effectiveness.

There were parallels to be drawn with regards to data repository policies on the subjects of disclosure and consent however what was evident from this well organised and well presented workshop was that social science data does not lend itself to open access environments the same way that data from the primary and natural sciences do. In addition to confidentiality, disclosure and consent, we also have the issue of hierarchical relationships between files (longitudinal/panel surveys etc) in addition to ethical and legal implications.

For course materials visit:

Thanks go to Veerle Van den Eynden and John Southall.

Stuart Macdonald

Thursday, 12 June 2008

My Faves for Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Andy Powell's slides describing how Web 2.0 could integrate with and enhance the repository environment

[tags: repositories]

See the rest of my Faves at Faves

Saturday, 7 June 2008

My Faves for Friday, June 06, 2008

An interview in CILIPS Update with DISC-UK members about the field of data librarianship in today's academic environment.

[tags: data curation, data libraries, articles, libraries]

See the rest of my Faves at Faves

Friday, 6 June 2008

My Faves for Thursday, June 05, 2008

Sun Microsystems sponsored conference on storage and preservation in San Francisco, May 2008. Article describes keynote speech by Librarian of Stanford University.

[tags: articles, preservation]

See the rest of my Faves at Faves