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Data Publishing Workflows

My collaborator, Dr. Mercè Crosas,  who is Director of Data Science in the Institute of Quantitative Social Sciences (IQSS) at Harvard services presented this talk as part of the Program on Information Science Brown Bag Series.

The Dataverse software provides multiple workflows for data publishing to support a wide range of data policies and practices established by journals, as well as data sharing needs from various research communities. This talk will describe these workflows from the user experience and from the system’s technical implementation.
Dr. Crosas discussed the portfolio of tools being developed at IQSS, including DataVerse, DataTags, Rbuild, TwoRavens, and Zelig. (The Program on Information Science is pleased to be collaborating in some of these efforts, including a project to integrate DataVerse and OJS, and to  develop a wide set of privacy tools that connect with DataTags — see the Program project portfolio.) Shergued that data publishing should be based on three ‘pillars’:
  1. Trusted data repositories that guarantee long-term access
  2. Mechanisms for formal data citation
  3. Sufficient information to understand and reuse the data (e.g. metadata, documentation, code)

It is interesting to consider the extent to which current tools and practices support these pillars: There have been many recent efforts focused trusted repositories and data citation.  And many of the projects described by Dr. Crosas promise to advance the state of the practice in these areas.

Determining what is sufficient information for understanding and reuse, and making that information easy to extract from the research process and research process, to record in structured ways, and to expose and present to different audiences seems to be an area with many opportunities, and few broad solution. And it is also interesting to consider the extent to which the workflows for publishing data integrate with the workflows managing data during research,  prior to publication —  I discuss some of these tools and integration points in a previous post

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