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May 2011

IASSIST Quarterly (IQ) volume 34-2 now on the web

The new issue of the IASSIST Quarterly is now available on the web. This is the volume 34 (number 2, 2010).

The layout has changed. We hope you’ll enjoy the new style presented. It seems to be a more modern format and more suited for the PDF presentation on the web. Walter Piovesan – our publication officer – had a biking accident. To show that nothing is so bad that it is not good for something Walter used his recovery time to redesign the IQ. Furthermore, Walter is the person in charge of the upcoming 2011 IASSIST conference, so he is a busy guy. And I’m happy to say that Walter should be fit for the conference.

This issue of the IQ features the following papers:

Rein Murakas and Andu Rämmer from the Estonian Social Science Data Archive (ESSDA) at the University of Tartu describe in their paper "Social Science Data Archiving and Needs of the Public Sector: the Case of Estonia" how the archive had a historical background in the empirical research of the Soviet Union.

From the historical background we move to web 2.0 in a paper  by Angela Hariche, Estelle Loiseau and Philippa Lysaght on "Wikiprogress and Wikigender: a way forward for online collaboration". The authors are working at the OECD and the paper's statement is that "collaborative platforms such as wikis along with advances in data visualisation are a way forward for the collection, analysis and dissemination of data across countries and societies”.

The third paper addresses an issue of central importance for most data archives. The question concerns balancing data confidentiality and the legitimate requirements of data users. This is a key problem of the Secure Data Service (SDS) at the UK Data Archive, University of Essex. The paper "Secure Data Service: an improved access to disclosive data" by Reza Afkhami, Melanie Wright, and Mus Ahmet shows how the SDS will allow researchers remote access to secure servers at the UK Data Archive.

The last article has the title "A user-driven and flexible procedure for data linking". The authors are Cees van der Eijk and Eliyahu V. Sapir from the Methods and Data Institute at the University of Nottingham. The data linking relates to research combining several different datasets. The implementation is developed for the PIREDEU project in comparative electoral research. The authors are combining traditional survey data with data from party manifestos and state-level data.

Articles for the IQ are always very welcome. They can be papers from IASSIST or other conferences, from local presentations or papers directly  written for the IQ.

Notice that chairing a conference session with the purpose of aggregating and integrating papers for a special issue IQ is much appreciated as the information reaches many more people than the session participants and will be readily available on the IASSIST website.

Authors are very welcome to take a look at the description for layout and sending papers to the IQ:

Authors can also contact me via e-mail: kbr @ Should you be interested in compiling a special issue for the IQ as guest editor or editors I will also be delighted to hear from you.

Karsten Boye Rasmussen, editor

Data Management & Curation Resources

Dear IASSIST members,

The Data Management & Curation Good Practice Action Group has been working this past year to compile a list of links and resources related to Data Management & Curation.

This group has been charged with “collecting a set of existing resources and links from among the membership to create a resource page on the public website covering the topics of good practice, standards, and activity in Data Management and Data Curation”.

Our focus is on the audience of the IASSIST membership. We tied the scope of this project to the IASSIST Strategic Plan. Basically, we are working to create a web resource which will provide information and resources directly related to the following areas:

  • Policies for making research data accessible
  • Practices in making research data accessible
  • Resources on responsible data curation
  • Data Management Plans

In keeping with the outlined project scope, we have gathered information in the following areas:

  • guides to data management,
  • tools for data management planning,
  • sample and template data management plans,
  • resources for data curation,
  • funder policies

Our resource page is now live on the IASSIST website:

Please take a look at the resources we have listed. If you are aware of, or are responsible for, great resources or tools that are not listed, and do fall within the criteria above, please send the information to our group at : by May 13, 2011. We will add them to the site. This is just a starting point. We apologize in advance if your resources were not included in this preliminary stage of development.

This site is intended to be an active resource which can and should be expanded upon over time. It is our hopes to establish a new IASSIST Action Group to be responsible for maintaining the site.

There may also be topics of interest which are not listed due to the scope of our project, for instance, we have decided at this point not to include sites on related topics such as advocacy, data communities, data lifecycles, data creation best practices, data use, metadata, data ethics, preservation, and professional development.  We are mindful that these are important issues, but needed to start with a more limited scope. There may be future opportunities for IASSIST members to gather information on areas outside the scope of this group.

If you have any ideas or comments on the resources listed or any other aspect of the project, please feel free to contact us. We are looking forward to receiving your input. Again, our deadline for input on this phase of the project should be sent to us by May 13, 2011.

Carol Perry
On behalf of the DMAG team

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