UK research data management experts at the CSIR

Funding bodies are increasingly requiring evidence of adequate and appropriate provisions for data management and curation in new grant funding applications. At the same time, publicly-funded data is increasingly required to be openly accessible for researchers to build on and for the wider research community to benefit from. The Network of Data and Information Curation Communities (NeDICC), which the CSIR is currently chairing, in collaboration with the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) in the UK, recently presented a workshop on research data management practices and principles. The aim of the workshop was to provide participants with the basic knowledge to start managing data at their respective institutions.

The workshop was influenced by important role players and experts in the field of digital curation, namely Joy Davidson (Associate Director, DCC), Sarah Jones (Senior Institutional Support Officer, DCC), Jim Mullins (Dean of Libraries, Purdue University), Elias Makonko (Research Data Curator, HSRC), and Anwar Vahed (Head: ICT for Earth Observation (ICT4EO) & DIRISA Manager).

The event, which took place on August 11 at the CSIR, was attended by 70 librarians, information specialists and research-assisting personnel from universities, universities of technology, and research councils across the country.

Following the workshop, NeDICC members, comprising data librarians and data curators from the ARC, CSIR, HSRC, the University of Pretoria, UNISA and Wits, participated in a half-day round table discussion with mentioned DCC staff members. Following the discussion very specific focus areas were identified as follow-up activities. These will be addressed in partnership with the DIRISA initiative. The three most important of these are the creation of a national web-based tool to support the creation of research data management plans, an investigation into a tiered system of trusted data repositories, and to establish very specific international collaboration agreements with established research data management stakeholders.

Article by Louise Patterton – CSIR Information Services

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