Already a member?

Sign In

Conference Presentations 2004

  • IASSIST 2004-Data Futures: Building on 30 Years of Advocacy, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
    Host Institution: Data and Program Library Service, University of Wisconsin-Madison

A2: Pulling It All Together: Strategies in Data Preparation (Wed, 2004-05-26)
Chair:San Cannon

  • Mixing It: Preparing Qual+Quant Data Collections for Dissemination: Experiences from the UK Data Archive
    Louise Corti (UK Data Archive, University of Essex)


    In this paper I will provide an overview of some of the challenges faced by the UK Data Archive in accessioning and processing mixed methods collections, i.e., those comprising quantitative and qualitative data. I will discuss issues pertaining to: data preparation including issues of case-linkage and anonymity; descriptive/cataloguing requirements; documentation or user guide preparation; and staff skill and training requirements. Two case studies will be used to illuminate the problems and solutions.

  • Practical Viability of Multiple Imputation as a Tool for Disclosure Protection for Large Scale Recurring Surveys
    Pat Doyle (U.S. Census Bureau)


    The literature often cites potential threats to the continued viability of microdata products arising from the increased availability of administrative data in the public domain and the decreased barriers to access by individuals not skilled in data processing. Yet demand for such products continues to rise as research and public policy demands on data become more sophisticated and require more in-depth analysis of the complexities of modern society. If the threat becomes real and the demand for microdata continues, the social science community will need an alternative to the traditional microdata products.

    Current research toward replacements for public use microdata files includes, among other options, proposals to disseminate analytically valid synthetic microdata. To date the research has focused on the methodology and on experiments designed to determine validity of the approach. There is another area of research needed to determine whether such methods can gain acceptance as a production tool by the data producers and the data users in the statistical community. In particular, producers need to understand what they can do to ensure users will have faith in the quality of the estimates derived from synthetic data.

    This presentation solicits feedback on the concept of disseminating synthetic data generated from a multiple imputation synthesizing methodology currently under development.

A3: Collaboration among Data Providers: Strength in Numbers (Wed, 2004-05-26)
Chair:Ernie Boyko

  • Data Curation and Digital Preservation: A View from the UK (Part 1&2)
    Peter Burnhill (EDINA National Data Centre and University Data Library)
    Robin Rice (EDINA National Data Centre and University Data Library)


    The Digital Curation Centre (DCC; has been established and funded by the UK government to provide leadership to the academic community on the related problems of scientific data curation and the long-term digital preservation of scholarly output. The funders awarded the bid to a consortium of four UK institutions, led by the University of Edinburgh, to provide a range of services for the initial three years of the centre's funding. The other partners are the University of Glasgow's Humanities Advanced Technology and Information Institute, the Council for the Central Laboratory of the Research Councils at Rutherford and Daresbury Appleton Laboratories, and the UK Office for Library and Information Networking at Bath. Each site will contribute a different expertise to the Centre, which is currently in the set-up phase of its operation.

    This paper will describe how a widely distributed partnership is being managed to achieve several 'proper tensions:'

    • between the needs of the hard sciences, which represent one end of the continuum, and the needs of the soft disciplines of the social sciences and humanities along the other end;
    • between the need for cutting edge research which will improve the state of knowledge about preservation and database curation, and the need for quick development of tools tuned to the immediate needs of the users; and
    • among a vast array of international standards efforts and preservation tools developed under hugely disparate circumstances, all of which will be in competition for certification or publicity by the Centre, to be rubber-stamped (or not) as deserving adoption by communities of practice.

    Peter Burnhill, Director (Phase One) of the DCC during the set-up phase, will outline some of the drivers behind the decision to set-up the Centre, the strategy being adopted to engage such a diverse range of communities, and the approach being taken to make an organisation from four partner institutions, drawing upon experience gained in setting up the EDINA National Data Centre nine years ago.

    Robin Rice, Phase One Project Coordinator, will describe what the social sciences have both to offer and to learn from the other disciplines in the emerging fields of data curation and digital preservation, with a focus on the current state of the art and the challenges ahead.

  • Archiving Historical Research Data
    Hans Jorgen Marker (Dansk Data Arkiv)


    Historical research increasingly uses and produces data, and archiving of these data is relevant for the same reasons that archiving of social science data is relevant. Actually, archiving of historical research data also raises some issues that are not that pressing when dealing with social science data.

    Discussions between the institutions that archive historical data were quite vivid 10 to 15 years ago but until recently there has been a period of silence. Some of the archives involved are trying to remedy that, because cooperation is as relevant when archiving historical data as when archiving social science data. Actually, there is a broad area of common problems between Social Science Data Archives and History Data Archives and many of the Social Science Data Archives are to greater or lesser extent custodians of historical research data.

    This presentation will point to some relevant areas of cooperation.

B1: Assessing User Needs and Data Services (Wed, 2004-05-26)
Chair:Donna Tolson

  • Thinking Strategically: Development of a Library Data Services Plan
    Katherine McNeill-Harman (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)


    Over the past several years, developments in technology and research have changed the ways in which libraries and their users interact with social science data. Moreover, the integrated and interdisciplinary nature of data requires collaboration among departments and organizations, as well as with providers of data related to GIS and scientific applications. These increasing and changing demands on the part of users present challenges for institutions in allocating their limited resources.

    In order to plan strategically to meet these needs, the MIT Libraries conducted a project to create a 3 year Data Services Plan. The plan contains goals for reference, instruction, collection development, personnel, facilities, computing, evaluation, and implementation. This presentation will describe the process of creating the Data Services Plan, including user studies, staff input, and research among peers in the social science data community. Additionally, it will discuss challenges faced, the development of priorities, and strategies for implementation.

  • Data Services Awareness and Use Survey: Assessing Secondary Data Needs at the University of Tennessee
    Eleanor J. Read (University of Tennessee)


    In recent years, the University of Tennessee has been striving to increase awareness and use of data services provided by the Libraries. A major move in that direction was hiring, for the first time, a data services librarian who could provide more specialized and proactive service to campus researchers. After three years with this new arrangement, we decided to conduct a survey to learn more about our secondary data users and to gauge the effectiveness of our various promotional activities. This session will describe the process used to gather information from faculty and graduate students in a variety of departments about the use of secondary data in their research, and about their awareness and use of the Libraries' Data Services. The results of the survey, completed by about 375 respondents, will be used to help plan future services and target groups that are potential data users.

  • Building the Statistical Knowledge Network: A Progress Report
    Carol Hert (Syracuse University)


    Finding and using statistics can be challenging because such information is located in multiple places and exists in large volumes. Efforts such as FedStats ( address the challenge by providing gateways. Our project takes these efforts further by proposing the Statistical Knowledge Network (SKN).

    We envision a seamless network, where users have transparent access to varied statistical information. The SKN would enable people to find statistics without having to know particular sources, and provide context for understanding and use.

    Over the last 4 years, we have been developing the SKN: developing a suite of tools for end-users, conceptualizing the architecture, and conducting user studies. In this presentation, we present a status report on our work to date and our future directions.

    Acknowledgments: Other contributors to this work are Gary Marchionini and Stephanie W. Haas of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and Ben Shneiderman and Catherine Plaisant, of the University of Maryland-College Park. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under Grant EIA 0131824. Project information is available at


B2: Peopling the Grid: A Panel Discussion of Institutional Solutions to Data Exchange (Wed, 2004-05-26)

  • One-Stop-Shop: UKDA Implementation of Athens
    Melanie F. Wright (UK Data Archive, University of Esse)
    Lucy Bell (UK Data Archive, University of Esse)
  • International Data Licensing: The Experience of ESDS International
    Keith John Cole (MIMAS)
  • The CESSDA Transborder Data Agreement
    Reto Hadorn (Swiss Information and Data Archive Service for the Social Sciences (SIDOS))
  • 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


  • Resources


    A space for IASSIST members to share professional resources useful to them in their daily work. Also the IASSIST Jobs Repository for an archive of data-related position descriptions. more...

  • community

    • LinkedIn
    • Facebook
    • Twitter

    Find out what IASSISTers are doing in the field and explore other avenues of presentation, communication and discussion via social networking and related online social spaces. more...