SPARC Digital Repositories meeting includes session on open data

By Chuck | November 10, 2010

Kathleen Shearer of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries organized and chaired a panel on Open Data was held at the SPARC Digital Repositories meeting on November 8, 2010.  IASSIST members Gail Steinhart and Chuck Humphrey were two of the three members on this panel.  Kevin Ashley, Director of the Digital Curation Centre (DCC), was the third.  It has been two years since this group last met and the attendance was said to have doubled between meetings (looked like there were around 150 people present.)  Those attending seemed to be responsible for managing or supporting the digital repository on their campus or active in open access publishing.  

Gail spoke about the staging repository for research data at Cornell and the formation of a Research Data Management Service Group (RDMSG) on her campus (see  The RDMSG is a joint initiative of the Senior Vice Provost for Research and the University Librarian.

Kevin discussed the activities of the DCC and addressed the need to train more research data specialists.  He concluded his presentation with a teaser about an important upcoming meeting in the UK on cloud computing and research data.  

Chuck spoke about relationships among the variety of players in the data landscape and used the example of managing the data from the Canadian International Polar Year to describe three different models by which digital repositories could collaborate among themselves and other players in the data landscape.

Both Gail and Chuck mentioned the importance of Ann Green and Myron Gutmann’s seminal work on relationships among domain archives and digital repositories (see Ann Green and Myron Gutmann, “Building partnerships among social science researchers, institution-based repositories and domain specific data arrchives,” OCLC Systems & Services, Vol. 23 (1), pp. 35-53).

Chuck asked the audience during his presentation how many of those attending had data libraries at their institution.  The show of hands was surprisingly few.  It may be that those working with digital repositories are not aware of data library services at their institution.  This may be a new community for IASSIST to establish relationships and build greater awareness.