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Conference Presentations 2016

  • IASSIST 2016-Embracing the 'Data Revolution': Opportunities and challenges for research, Bergen
    Host Institution: NSD - Norwegian Centre for Research Data

1H: Online user support and training (Fri, 2016-06-03)
Chair:Cameron Tuai

  • Developing Teaching and Learning Resources for Students and Teachers
    Kathryn Simpson (University of Manchester/ UK Data Service)


    The UK Data Service (UKDS) is a resource funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to support researchers, students, lecturers and policymakers who depend on high-quality social and economic data. This presentation will demonstrate the new resources developed for students and teachers. Firstly, a suite of Student Resources webpages have been developed alongside a Using Survey Data Guide. Within the guide, key issues are related to real data using an example research project covering themes such as research questions, finding and accessing data, getting started with data analysis and reporting of results. Secondly, we have developed a UKDS Student Forum on Facebook which has 170 members participating in discussions. Through the forum we have launched a Student Dissertation Prize-the prize will be awarded to a dissertation that demonstrates flair and originality using quantitative data. The winning dissertation, along with its key findings, will be publicised on the UKDS website and through the UKDS' quarterly Newsletter. Thirdly, for teachers, we have developed Teaching and Learning Worksheets to help students learn statistical techniques such as correlation and regression using real data from the UKDS. We have also updated our Teaching with Data webpages and a number of our teaching datasets.

  • Training across Services: Resources, Convenience and Safe Use of Sensitive Data
    James Scott (UK Data Service)


    The UK Data Service (UKDS) leads the way in offering remote access to sensitive microdata for UK-based academics via its Secure Lab. UKDS offers a range of support to its growing number of users and has taken a lead role in the development of a new joint training course in using these data, to be administered by a consortium of four UK-based Research Data Centres. UKDS' partners in this venture are The Virtual Microdata Laboratory at the Office for National Statistics, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) Datalab and the Administrative Data Research Network. Deployment of this training represents an improved course and a better use of resources for RDCs and researchers. Retaining the concept of the "Safes" at its core, the new course is recognised across all services within the consortium, eliminating the need for repeat training when users wish to use more than one service. The consortium is committed to regular review of the course and making improvements if appropriate. UKDS have also developed a standalone course for those (e.g. PhD supervisors) with different needs. The "Safe" security model will be discussed alongside the wider considerations of training researchers to use these highly sensitive data safely.

  • Developing Survey-specific Online Resources to Enhance Data Use and Confidence in Researchers: Understanding Society, A Case Study
    Deborah Wiltshire (UK Data Service)


    An important aspect of the UK Data Service's work is to promote statistical literacy and engagement with quantitative survey data. We provide support by creating user guides and webinars as well as through help desk support. There is often a gap between the skills learned using bespoke data, and the reality of using survey data for analysis. The queries we receive indicate a need for greater understanding of survey design and data collection, especially with longitudinal surveys which have many constraints including fieldwork procedures, respondent burden, confidentiality, and software limitations. There is some disparity between researchers' expectations and the analysis of data obtained from a repository. Having previously worked on Understanding Society, I now work in the UK Data Service User Support Team which gives me an understanding of the challenges faced by researchers and how to address those challenges. I am collaborating with the Understanding Society team to provide training events like our recent webinar introducing Ethnic Minority Boost data. I am developing online materials to support researchers in using Understanding Society. Using the success of this model as a template, we aim to explore further opportunities to collaborate closely with data depositors and ultimately improve the research experience.


1J: Geospatial data (Fri, 2016-06-03)
Chair:Lynda Kellam

  • Roles and Gaps in Geospatial Information Management in Asia and Pacific Countries
    Jungwon Yang (University of Michigan)


    At its 47th plenary meeting on July 27, 2011, the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations acknowledged the urgent need to strengthen international cooperation in global geospatial information management. The ECOSOC established the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) during that meeting, and asked the UN-GGIM to identify the global, regional, and national challenges, and provide recommendations for their resolution. In October 2015, after 5 years of investigation, the Asia and Pacific member states of the UN-GGIM and United Nations agencies, such as United nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), UN Habitat, UN Statistics Division, and United Nations Group on the Information Society (UNGIS), convened to share their global and national projects at the 4th UN-GGIM-AP conference. In this presentation I will present the major global and national projects and challenges of Asia and the Pacific countries related to capacity building and disaster risk management. I will also introduce open GIS software, was developed by the United Nations agencies and the UN-GGIM-AP member states. Finally, I will discuss how these current global collaborations in Asia and the Pacific countries will affect the availability and reliability of geospatial data in the region.

  • Supporting campus GIS needs with Limited Staffing and Budgetary Resources
    Erich Purpur (University of Nevada)


    Following the model of many American university libraries, University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) libraries are providing increased GIS and research data support to the campus community. These services are heavily used by both campus users and community members. With minimal staffing and budget allocated towards serving growing GIS needs, meeting the user demands is challenging. Available GIS services are wide-ranging and serve a breadth of departments on campus, a large cohort of which are in the social sciences. In-person technical support, data gathering, statistical services, data management assistance, and funding issues are a part of the suite of GIS services offered. On top of this, UNR libraries maintains the state's online public GIS data and remote sensing imagery portal (, in service to many private, state, and federal agencies in Nevada. This session will examine in further detail how GIS staff navigates these responsibilities among other duties and how they efficiently leverage expertise and technology to support the teaching, learning, and research mission of the university. Lastly, we will discuss the successes we have had in gaining additional resources from administration through thorough documentation and assessment of GIS activities.

  • Implementing an Infrastructure to Georeference Survey Data at the GESIS Data Archive
    Stefan Schweers (GESIS - Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)
    Stefan Muller (GESIS - Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)
    Katharina Kinder-Kurlanda (GESIS - Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)


    There is an increasing demand for georeferenced survey data in the social sciences as such data promise to contribute to a better understanding of how the concrete living environment influences individuals' attitudes and behaviors. In consequence, when the two are brought together, spatial data can complement survey data in important ways and can open up new possibilities for research. For example, census data can be added to survey data. However, this opportunity is only rarely realized in the social sciences as researchers face several technical and legal barriers.
    Currently, there is no infrastructure in Germany that facilitates the merging of spatial data with survey data in an open and transparent way. The project "Georeferencing of survey data" (GeorefUm) explores avenues for creating such a spatial data infrastructure (SDI) for the social sciences.
    In our presentation we examine the role that a spatial data infrastructure can play in offering services for social scientists, and show the scope and nature of necessary tasks in areas such as archiving, dissemination and user support. As the case of Germany is similar to that of other European countries, we expect our results to be helpful in the creation of SDIs in other countries as well.

  • Map the Process: See the Data
    Andy Rutkowski (University of California, Los Angeles)
    Yoh Kawano (University of California, Los Angeles)
    Stacy Williams (University of Southern California)


    Online web mapping of data has increasingly become ubiquitous within student and faculty research as well as becoming integral to the ways that programs/institutes/organizations communicate and share their work or collections. With platforms like CartoDB, MapBox, Google My Maps, and developer spaces like GitHub, it has become easier and easier to create simple, effective, and beautiful maps that display all types of information.

    This paper/presentation shares the experience of creating a custom online web mapping template that anyone can use - as long as they have a dataset. The project emerged during a seminar course when students began using an online archive that contained images with geographic information but no map viewer/interface to explore the data. The project was then adapted to work with other materials within our institution's collections. We will share the process of getting data from that website, cleaning and data preparation for a map-viewer, identifying future growth and enrichment of the data, and the different tools, hardware, software, and programming languages necessary to create a simple and functional online map viewer. The emphasis of this paper/presentation will be on the process and how to get students and faculty to understand what is involved in gathering, preparing, and displaying data online. Larger issues that we will address include the sustainability of online mapping projects, best practices for data curation, and creating/enabling user communities around mapping projects.

2E: Data management planning in action (Fri, 2016-06-03)
Chair:E. Michelle Edwards

  • High Costs - Little Benefits? The Costs of Research Data Management
    Sebastian Netscher (GESIS, Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)
    Astrid Recher (GESIS, Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)


    Researchers often consider Research Data Management (RDM) a chore with high cost but little benefit. The argument of little benefits is easily refuted seeing that RDM enhances the quality and transparency of research. However, we lack evidence for the cost of RDM. It is difficult to measure this cost because many RDM measures are an integral part of the research process. Moreover, RDM cost depends on the specific design of a research project and so far very little data exists to help us identify cost drivers in a project.
    Our project aims to close the gap of missing reliable calculations by examining the cost of RDM as follows: Firstly, it identifies the areas of RDM causing costs in research projects. Secondly, it systematically analyzes RDM measures undertaken in different projects: (inter-)national surveys in which quantitative data was processed, harmonized and documented, as well as projects that collected qualitative data. On this basis, the project aims to develop a better idea of the cost factors of RDM with the objective of creating a tool to assist researchers to calculate the costs of RDM. The presentation will provide an insight into RDM cost drivers and our approach to examining these costs.

  • Active Data Management Planning and Its Exchange with DDI
    Uwe Jensen (GESIS, Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)
    Sebastian Netscher (GESIS, Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences)


    Research data management (RDM) is an integral part of research. Nowadays, Data Management Planning is becoming highly relevant for project proposals, since data policies and funding guidelines expect replicability, sharing and re-use of publicly funded data.
    However, implementing systematic RDM is challenging for different reasons at different levels:

    •   with respect to project complexity and available resources in social science research RDM is unambiguously related to a certain research project;
    •   in regard to funders, (inter-)national regulations on funding and data policies vary greatly;
    •   in terms of DDI, there exists no data management plan (DMP) standard that enable fully integrated in the current DDI flavours, so far.

    To face such challenges, the DDI working group Active Data Management Planning (ADMP) aims incorporating DMP into current DDI versions. In line with their goals the presentation provides an overview of achieved results (so far) with respect to the following issue:

    •   We introduce uses cases of projects, funders, and archives to consider their specific DPM requirements for integration into DDI specifications.
    •   We inform on common, different and notably re-usable DMP information sets to be exchanged among these user groups. The specific workflows between the triangle of projects, funders and archives will be considered respectively.
    •   Finally, we discuss options of how to integrate the findings into DDI and the potential usage of and mapping with (other) standards.

    With this presentation, we aim to get feedback from the IASSIST community on the various use cases and the usage of DMPs for various purposes. Thus, the feedback shall foster the work of the DDI ADMP working group to integrate relevant data management planning assets into DDI.

  • Early Intervention and Data Management - New Strategy for Increasing Research Data Deposits
    Gry Henriksen (Norwegian Social Science Data Service (NSD))


    NSD have archival agreements with The Norwegian Research Council, and research institutions. Even so, NSD receive only a fraction of the potential numbers of data sets for archiving. The reasons are multiple and solutions complex. We believe that closer contact with the researchers will increase the number of deposits and be advantageously both for the researchers and the archival services. This given that the contact strengthens the researcher's ability to collect, document and manage their own research data.
    NSD's new strategy in this area is to focus on more, and more targeted on research needs during the whole research process. The core will be early intervention including introduction of a new data management plan (DMP) that reflect the researchers needs for good research organization and practice. The new DMP will not just provide the archive with good and usable metadata, but also provide the researcher with tools and resources to collect high quality research data in compliance with legal or ethical requirements. We will focus on targeted information and training to the research community.
    This presentation will present and discuss the new strategy and our first experiences.

  • 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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