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Susan Noble

Data Service Manager (international macro-data)
UK Data Service, University of Manchester
How did you become involved in the world of data?: 

By accident.  Having gained my first degree in Archaeology I went on to do a Masters in Information Technology where I first developed an interest in data whilst doing a GIS based dissertation - mapping archaeological data in North East England.   I then worked for Marconi Telecommunications as a Business Analyst for a number of years before returning to an academic environment in 2003 when I joined Mimas at the University of Manchester as part of the Economic and Social Data Service.


This position allowed me to get back into the world of data, though now rather than archaeological information, I work primarily with international socio-economic macro level data produced by Inter Governmental Organisations such as the IMF, the OECD, the IEA and the UN.  The service I manage facilitates research, learning and teaching by providing free (for UK higher and further education) access to, and support for, a huge range of  s statistical databanks that collectively chart over 50 years of global social, economic and environmental change.

What do you value most about your membership in IASSIST?: 

I think of IASSIST as a group of enthusiastic data professionals who are keen and willing to share their experiences in the world of data. I value the opportunity to discover what is happening in the world of data in other countries – either through the conferences or just via the IASSIST mailing list.

What was your favorite IASSIST conference?: 

I have been to three IASSIST conferences, (Madison, Wisconsin, USA 2004, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK 2005, Washington DC, USA, 2012) and have really enjoyed each one.  I particularly enjoyed the entertainment at the Madison conference (involved a tractor ride, barn dance and someone dressed up as a dancing cow?!).  I also enjoyed doing my first ever Pecha Kucha presentation at the Washington DC event on ‘Fixation with Citation’.

What are some things you are working on currently?: 

Preparing for the launch of the UK Data Service - Funded by ESRC and set for public launch in 2013, this new national service will integrate data and resources from the Economic and Social Data Service (ESDS), the Census Programme and the Secure Data Service. Learn more at

The team I work with are developing a new data dissemination platform (UKDS.Stat) which we hope to launch as a beta release before Christmas 2012.

I’m interested in data citation and plan to work on raising awareness amongst our users of the importance of correct citation, monitor DOI usage and also to work on improving our existing citation system.

When not working with data I…: 

Spend most of my time looking after my two young children!  Apart from that, I am attempting to re-learn the piano (it seemed a lot easier when I was 10), getting involved in my home town’s Art Association ( and have recently re-started practising Wado-ryu Karate.  

  • 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


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