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Conference Presentations 2011

  • IASSIST 2011-Data Science Professionals: A Global Community of Sharing, Vancouver, BC
    Host Institution: Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia

E3: The NSF Data Management Plan Requirement: An Opportunity and Challenge for Research Data Librarians (Thu, 2011-06-02)
Chair:Jake Carlson, Purdue University Libraries

  • NSF Data Management Plan Requirement: An Opportunity and Challenge for Research Data Librarians
    Barrie Hayes (University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill)
    Susan Parham (Georgia Institute of Technology)
    Brian Westra (Columbia University, CIESIN)
    Jake Carlson (Purdue University Libraries)

E4: Challenges and Capabilities for Long-term Preservation of Scientific Data (Thu, 2011-06-02)
Chair:Robert Downs, CIESIN, Columbia University

  • Library of Congress Strategies for Working with Geospatial Data: A Collaborative Engagement
    Erin Engle (Library of Congress)
    William Lefurgy (Library of Congress)
    William Lazorchak (Library of Congress)


    For the past ten years, the Library of Congress National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP) has been working to understand the challenges and to explore strategies of collecting, preserving and making available significant digital content, including geospatial data, for current and future generations. NDIIPP has built a national network of partners in academia, the private sector and in federal, state and local government who are cooperating on best practices and standards and developing shared tools and services for digital preservation. A pillar of NDIIPP is that cooperation and engagement with communities of practice are necessary to select and preserve at-risk digital content. NDIIPP has been very interested in geospatial data since the program’s inception. This presentation will discuss NDIIPP’s strategies for working with the geospatial community on preservation and access issues, including a discussion of recent activities such as the summit meetings with recognized experts to discuss framing a national preservation and access strategy for geospatial data, the launch of the National Digital Stewardship Alliance and the recent work of the Federal Geospatial Data Committee Users/Historical Data Working Group.

  • Improving Practice through Experiential Learning: Library of Congress Geospatial Data Preservation Projects
    Steven Morris (North Carolina State University Libraries)


    The North Carolina Geospatial Data Archiving Project (NCGDAP) was a joint effort between North Carolina State University Libraries and the North Carolina Center for Geographic Information & Analysis, in cooperation with the Library of Congress under the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP). That initial project served to catalyze discussions about data preservation needs within the network of data producers and custodians that form spatial data infrastructure, and led to the formal involvement of state archives in data preservation of activities. Cross-fertilization with activities in other states led to a subsequent NDIIPP initiative called GeoMAPP (Geospatial Multistate Archive and Preservation Partnership), which has built on the initial learning experiences of NCGDAP and has focused more explicitly on formal archival processes such as selection, appraisal, retention scheduling, and content transfer. GeoMAPP has recently expanded to include five participant states, and is now focused on preservation and data transfer, storage and access, industry outreach, mentoring peer states, and business planning. The experience of both NCGDAP and GeoMAPP has shown the value of providing producers and managers of geospatial data with access to information resources that support data preservation efforts.

  • Developing an Online Resource Center about Geospatial Data Preservation
    Robert R. Downs (Columbia University, CIESIN)
    Robert C. Chen (Columbia University, CIESIN)


    Like other scientific artifacts that are in digital form, geospatial data, maps, and other spatial information products and services are at risk of being lost if not preserved for future use. Enabling the future use of geospatial data can foster new opportunities for learning and facilitate capabilities for scientific investigations to build on the results of previous research. A key challenge is to promote awareness of the need for preservation and the approaches, methods, and tools available to support preservation efforts. Providing developers and managers of geospatial information with web-based tools and information resources to preserve geospatial data can contribute to capabilities for enabling long-term access to geospatial data. The Geospatial Data Preservation Resource Center is being developed to provide communities of geospatial data professionals, scientific data librarians, and others interested in the preservation of geospatial assets with resources to assist them in preserving our geospatial information heritage. The presentation describes the design and development of an online resource center about the preservation of geospatial data, including a survey of the geospatial data management community conducted to inform its design and identify expectations for use.


Poster Session (Thu, 2011-06-02)

  • The future IFDO
    Sami Borg (Finnish Social Science Data Archive)
    Yukio Maeda (Finnish Social Science Data Archive)


    The International Federation of Data Organizations for the Social Sciences (IFDO) was established in 1977. It supports data exchange and cross-national comparative research through cooperation between national social science data archives. IFDO was established to promote projects and procedures for enhancing exchange of data and technologies among data organizations, to stimulate development and use of these procedures throughout the world, and to encourage new data organizations to further these objectives. Now IFDO is thinking through its strategy, governance and position. The future IFDO aims to work in multilateral cooperation with other organizations (like CESSDA, IASSIST) and activities (like International Data Forum). This poster declares thoughts on the new position of IFDO, and calls data archives and data professionals to contribute ideas to the planning process.

  • Harmonization Potential of 53 Large Population-Based Studies Using the DataSHaPER
    Dany Doiron (Public Population Project in Genomics)


    The DataSHaPER (DataSchema and Harmonization Platform for Epidemiological Research; was developed to provide a flexible, but structured approach to the harmonization and pooling of selected information between studies. In this poster/demonstration, this methodological tool is used to demonstrate the potential of sharing harmonized data (148 reference variables) between 53 large population-based studies (6.9 million participants). The DataSHaPER approach to retrospective harmonization is threefold. Firstly, rules reflecting the formal criteria that determine if a particular reference variable can be recreated from the assessment items of each study are defined. These rules also determine the quality of the match between reference variables and assessment items. Secondly, rules are applied for each reference variable and for each study participating in the harmonization process. Finally, results from this exercise are tabulated to illustrate the data sharing potential between participating studies. Results from this harmonization exercise show that a number of important reference variables can potentially be shared and co-analyzed by a large number of participating studies. The data harmonization potential thus demonstrated by the DataSHaPER tool offers the promise of greatly enhanced collaborative research generated through synthesized databases in many fields including health, environmental, and social sciences.

  • Implementing DdiEditor in the Danish Data Archive - Demonstration and gained experience.
    Nana Floor Clausen (Danish Data Archive)
    Jannik V. Jensen (Danish Data Archive)


    In the beginning of 2011 the Danish Data Archive (DDA) implemented its first release of the DdiEditor. This has resulted in new perspectives on documenting and managing data, the demonstration and presentation seeks to spread gained knowledge on previous experiences so far. One of the major challenges has been how the DdiEditor can secure high quality data and documentation that has been one of DDA's trademarks so far. This approach has been a key factor in both past and further developments of the DdiEditor. DdiEditor is an Open Source project facilitating editing of DDI-3 for further information se project homepage:

  • The DDI Tools Catalog: development of a resource for the social science (meta)data community
    Stefen Kramer (Cornell Institute for Social and Economic Research)
    Katherine McNeill (MIT Libraries)


    At its annual meeting on May 31, 2010, the DDI Alliance Expert Committee agreed to charge a newly formed group with the revision of the DDI Tools Catalog (, which aims to support the social science data community by providing a comprehensive, web-accessible database of tools for utilizing DDI metadata. This live preview of the revised Tools Catalog will show its new features and workflow for developer submissions. Feedback from the social science data community on what would make the DDI Tools Catalog even more useful in the future, and volunteers for editing its contents, will also be invited.

  • Case Study in Assessing Scientific Data Management Practices and Needs
    Sherry Lake (University of Virginia Library)


    The University of Virginia Library is working to support new data management requirements in science and engineering by developing a model that first draws upon close collaboration between data experts and subject librarians, and culminates in policy and infrastructure recommendations to the University's Office of the Vice President for Research (VPR) and the Office of the Vice President/Chief Information Officer (VP/CIO). This model begins with a data interview to assess the researcher's data management practices and needs and to establish a baseline awareness of current practice. After collecting this information, the results are furnished to the institutional repository team and NSF Data Management Plan working group to inform their processes. In aggregate form, this information is provided to the VPR and VP/CIO as policy and infrastructure recommendations. Ultimately, the entire process cycles back to the researcher with specific recommendations and solutions that will help improve the research process. This presentation will offer a case study following a scientist through this consulting process with the hope that it will be useful as a means of identifying user needs and as a model for the evolving data profession across many disciplines.

  • Faster, easier and safer access to microdata
    Donald McIntosh (Space-Time Research )


    Query-based access is an alternative approach to dissemination-based access for making statistics available. It takes advantage of high performance computing and new information privacy protection methods to reduce the amount of up front work required from the provider and increase the level of access to data for end users. It is particularly useful when your statistics are in demand from researchers.

  • 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

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    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...