Announcing an engagement
You only have to look at recent statements from Research Councils UK, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the Wellcome Trust and others to know that researchers are under increasing pressure to create and manage their data in an appropriate and, ideally, open way.
The University of Northampton was one of the earliest universities to develop a research data policy. Our policy is straightforward. It recognises that good research is underpinned by good research data management and expects researchers to follow RCUK recommendations for achieving this. On a practical level it encourages each researcher to produce a data management plan at an early stage of their research lifecycle and to deposit their data in a data repository on the completion of the project.
Winning that buy-in is something that we hope to achieve with the help of colleagues Sarah Jones and Marieke Guy from the Digital Curation Centre (DCC). The University of Northampton is one of 18 UK institutions to be selected for a DCC ‘institutional engagement‘. Worth 60 days of expert help, each engagement has the aim of increasing data management capability and developing a range of tools and best practice that can be implemented by other institutions.
At Northampton we are working with a number of volunteer researchers and research groups to establish the tools and practices most helpful to their current needs. From this starting point, we hope to develop services and guidance that will prove useful to all researchers.
If you have a particular data management challenge and you would like some support from the experts, please contact me, Miggie Pickton, in the first instance. Our engagement with the DCC will last until February 2013, don’t leave it too late.