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Data Curation Network: A cross-institutional staffing model for curating research data
The Data Curation Network is a community of experts who have the software skills and domain know-how needed to curate digital research data, thereby ensuring those data are valuable and reusable for the long-term. Specialized curatorial actions to best prepare data for reuse include quality assurance, file integrity checks, documentation review, metadata creation for discoverability, and file transformations into archival formats. Due to the heterogeneous and multidisciplinary nature of research data generated in our research institutions, the skills and expertise required to curate data (to prepare, arrange, describe, and test data for optimal reuse) cannot reasonably be provided by a few experts siloed at single institutions. The Data Curation Network provides a shared staffing model for experts across member institutions as well as a commitment to promoting the value of curation with the broader research community. This presentation will address how we are organized, the curation procedures we use, and how we hope to grow in the future.
Lisa R. Johnston, the Research Data Management/Curation Lead and director of the Data Repository for the University of Minnesota (DRUM) at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities Libraries. Johnston coordinates the library's efforts around research data management and leads a team of five data curation experts for archiving research data in DRUM. Since 2012, Johnston has also served as the co-director of the University of Minnesota’s institutional repository for research and publications, the University Digital Conservancy. Johnston is the co-editor (with Jacob Carlson) of Data Information Literacy: Librarians, Data, and the Education of a New Generation of Researchers (2015, Purdue University Press) and editor of Curating Research Data: Practical Strategies for your Digital Repository (2017, ACRL Press).
Debra Fagan, Curation and Technical Specialist at Dryad. Dryad is an independent, non-profit, general-purpose repository for research data underlying scholarly publications. Debra holds an undergraduate degree in Computer Science and an MS in Library and Information Science. At Dryad, Debra draws from her education and her years of experience, serving as a librarian and a computer programmer, to work as part of a small team archiving data in a wide variety of formats and disciplines.