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Project StORe: making the connections for research

Graham Pryor (Project StORe, Digital Library Division, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK)

OCLC Systems & Services: International digital library perspectives

ISSN: 1065-075X

Article publication date: 20 February 2007

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the workflows and norms of scientific researchers in their use of source and output repositories and to design functional links between them that will enhance the value of research data.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper reports on the key findings from a survey of seven scientific disciplines, with analysis of data from an online questionnaire and a series of structured interviews, conducted with a representative cohort of researchers.

Findings

The paper finds that significant support was expressed for the provision of bi‐directional links between source and output repositories, tempered by a limited knowledge of repositories among the survey constituency and the need for reassurance on measures for the protection of data ownership. Diversity in the application of good data management practice is marked both between and within each of the disciplines surveyed, with solutions adopted characterised by a culture of self‐sufficiency and the use of repositories driven by practical research requirements. Common areas for improvement have been recognised across the disciplines, notably in the processes described for the assignment of metadata, and opportunities for expert assistance in data management were identified.

Research limitations/implications

Having identified the specificity of requirements and levels of understanding within individual disciplines, further research would benefit the design and alignment of repository and information services.

Practical implications

Observations of researcher attitudes and behaviours provide clues to future service provision, and to the principal functions of data repositories. Evidence for the potential realignment of institutional information services is also provided.

Originality/value

This paper presents a candid description of the challenges facing data managers, curators and information service providers.

Keywords

Citation

Pryor, G. (2007), "Project StORe: making the connections for research", OCLC Systems & Services: International digital library perspectives, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 70-78. https://doi.org/10.1108/10650750710720775

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited