Farewell from the Incremental team

April 26, 2011

The Incremental project has now come to a close, so this is, sadly, our last post. 😦

With that in mind, we thought this would be a good opportunity to highlight the various resources produced during the course of the project, explain how the work will continue, and tell you how you can keep up with the team.

WHAT WE FOUND

Like all the other projects in the JISC funded managing research data programme the first phase of the project focussed on gathering researchers’ requirements. We found that many researchers (i) organise their data in an ad hoc fashion, causing difficulties with retrieval and re‐use; (ii) store their data on all kinds of media, without always considering security and back‐up; (iii) are positive about data sharing in principle, though almost universally reluctant in practice; and (iv) believe back‐up is equivalent to preservation.

We also found that researchers require clearer, readily available guidance and practical support to manage their data effectively.  For the full scoping study report, please see: http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/preservation/incremental/documents/Incremental_Scoping_Report_170910.pdf

HOW WE RESPONDED:

The project  responded by raising awareness of existing guidance, support and services; providing easy to find, clear advice on new, central guidance web pages; repurposing existing guidance into more accessible formats; and, where necessary, created new resources.

For our data management guidance pages at our universities, please see:

http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/dataman/

http://www.glasgow.ac.uk/datamanagement/

The generic guidance from these pages has been put on an open wiki, so it’s easier for others to copy, add to and share:

http://wiki.arts.gla.ac.uk/dmg/index.php/Data_Management_Guidance_Contents

To raise awareness and help University staff and students address concerns and hone skills, we also provided practical training in the form of workshops and seminars, which addressed key data management topics.

Various resources were produced from these seminars, including a number of short videos in which researchers and data managers share their lessons:

http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/dataman/training.html#Interviews

http://www.gla.ac.uk/services/datamanagement/training/videos/

All our work is Creative Commons licensed (BY-NC-SA), so feel free to reuse. If you use any content, please drop us a line so we can measure impact

incremental@lib.cam.ac.uk

Our resources have also been deposited in JORUM and findable by searching for ‘JISC Incremental’.

SUSTAINING WHAT WE DEVELOPED:

The resources and relationships built through Incremental will require a certain amount of ongoing sustainability work.  At Cambridge, Incremental will be handing these responsibilities over to DSpace@Cambridge, which has been involved in the project from the start and sees research data management support as part of its remit.  The University Library and DSpace@Cambridge are also bringing together a few sources to fund a 12-18 month full-time post to further develop the work of Incremental and repository projects within the University.

At Glasgow, HATII will be taking responsibility to maintain Incremental resources in the short-term while the Digital Preservation Advisory Board will ensure they’re embedded into University services thereafter.  The staff who worked on Incremental will remain within HATII working on complementary projects, where the relationships that they have built with researchers and support services will continue to serve the University.

THANKYOU!

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank  JISC, our programme manager, Simon Hodson, and the other projects in the MRD programme, the DSpace@Cambridge team, the DataTrain project team, the CAiRO project, the Digital Curation Centre and the Digital Preservation Coalition; and to all those who followed our blog!

We would like to give special thanks to the researchers, students, and support service staff who took part in our interviews, and who contributed to our data management workshops and seminar series.  We are also particularly indebted to university services for helping to embed the resources.

KEEPING IN TOUCH:

Members of the research, preservation, data management, computing technology, and library communities who are interested in Incremental’s work, or who have questions about materials which we have produced can contact us at the post-project e-mail incremental@lib.cam.ac.uk (which goes to both Cambridge andGlasgow project staff and/or their predecessors).  We welcome feedback and recommendations for future development.

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