Caroline Ingram, research data management subject specialist at Jisc talks about our latest guide on engaging researchers to manage better their data.
We have recently published a guide on engaging your researchers with managing research data. It will be of interest to university researchers and research data management support staff, including those who are responsible for giving advice to researchers on the storage, management, publication and archiving of research data.
It takes the position that managing research data is an integral part of the research process, and most researchers probably already do it. This is demonstrated by the familiarity of most of the activities involved: naming files so you can find them quickly; keeping track of different versions, and deleting those not needed; backing up valuable data and controlling who has access to the data. This new guide builds on our quick guide to managing research data.
Engaging with the research data management processes should provide benefits for the individual researchers, their research teams, students, their institution, and their external collaborators and partners.
Researchers are reminded that their research data is crucial as it is the evidence base for their research findings. It is also a valuable resource in its own right that will have taken a great deal of time and money to create
The guide outlines reasons why research data should be managed in an appropriate and timely manner. These are described as both sticks (requirements) and carrots (benefits)!
The guide concludes in some suggested actions that researchers could take to manage their research data better. Central to this is the advice to manage their data appropriately within the institutional policy and the guidelines set out locally or for their discipline. The main way they can do this is by creating a data management plan at the outset and revisiting it on a regular basis.
Our research at risk co-design area is an overarching theme for the range of work Jisc is delivering to help universities and others address the urgent challenges involved in sharing and managing research data.
About the author: Caroline Ingram is responsible for advising and guiding research support offices about research data management processes. She works closely with Jisc colleagues in delivering Jisc enabled products and services related to research data management.