Research data spring – phase 3

Back in November 2014 we started research data spring with 70 ideas looking to develop or enhance technical tools and software that would improve the management of research data. The first two phases saw 16 and then 11 of these ideas being developed and tested.

For the third and last phase of research data spring, we are supporting 7 projects that are looking to bring a few sustainable and ready to use solutions to researchers and research support offices this summer. Here is a brief description of each:

DMA Online (Lancaster University) –

is a dashboard for research support managers that will automatically aggregate statistics for the number of data sets published, project compliance with RCUK data policy, number of DMPs published etc. To get an idea, you can try out the demo page.

DataVault (University of Edinburgh and Manchester) –

is a software system that allows data creators to smoothly decide how and where to archive their data. A demo of the software is available for testing.

Giving researchers credit for their data (Oxford University) –

is a helper app that will allow researchers to easily create and submit a data paper to a data journal of their choosing. To get an overview of how this app works, check out the team’s pitch from December’s workshop. The team is working with City University’s Open Journal Systems streamlining deposit project, who are helping on the UX side. The latter will be promoting the OJS plugin solution for the simultaneous deposit of a paper and its data deployed at Ubiquity Press to other publishers.

Artivity (University of the Arts London) –

is a software tool that captures everything that an artist does on his or her computer leading up to the creation of their art work. The team is working with Semiodesk to enhance the Artivity software further and test it within UAL. Check Athanasios’ phase 3 pitch for more details.

Clipper (City of Glasgow College and Open University) –

is an app that allows researchers to clip and annotate video and audio files, as well as sharing these clips and annotations without actually having to include the video file itself. Try out the prototype here.

Filling in the preservation gap (University of York and Hull) –

is working with The National Archives around file format identification, as well as engaging with the general processes for submission to PRONOM. You will have seen their presentation on filling in the digital preservation gap and the Archivematica requirements at the IDCC conference.

Extending the OPD to cover RDM (DCC and University of Southampton) –

is working on a set of fields and indicators to help research support offices understand, develop and maintain research data infrastructure compliant with RCUK data policies. The fields are already available on the Organisational Profile Document Linking You list of terms. To see an example, check out University of St. Andrew’s OPD.


The project teams will carry on testing and developing their solutions until the end of August. If you are interested in any of them and would like to get involved, please contact myself or the projects directly. Or if you want to browse through the outputs and find out more about the partners for each of the projects, click through to their blogs or project pages that I have linked above. You can also check their latest pitches on the #JiscRDM slideshare.

As research data spring is part of the Research at Risk Portfolio of projects which focuses on developing sustainable services and solutions for Research Data Management, we are continuously identifying and working on the potential links and complementarity of the research data spring tools and other projects we are developing. Of note would be the research data shared service, UK research data discovery service, and the business case value and costing of research data infrastructure project.

We are also planning to organise a research data spring showcase at the beginning of autumn, so watch out for details on that. In the meantime, we will continue to disseminate the outputs from the 7 projects supported, as well as any interesting work from the previous two phases.