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Research Data Management

Overview

The UWinnipeg Borealis repository is designed to share and publish research generated through the course of a UWinnipeg-affiliated research project to allow these data to be used for future research purposes.

To get started, Sign Up for an account and review the Collection Policy before adding your dataset.

Deciding which data to share:

Although you may have created many datasets and files over the course of a research project, it's a good idea to share:

  • Raw data from your initial observations or survey (as long as it is free of sensitive information and you own the data or have permission to share)
  • Processed data that has been cleaned of errors and/or anonymized to remove direct or indirect identifying information
  • Preservation data, reformatted in preferred preservation formats
  • Enough supporting documentation for other researchers to understand, reproduce, and/or reuse your data

Note: The UWinnipeg Research Data Repository does not accept data that could directly or indirectly identify subjects except where the release of such identifying information has no potential for constituting an unwarranted invasion of privacy and/or breach of confidentiality. All personally-identifiable information in the data must meet one of the conditions outlined in Borealis Terms of Use.

Prior to Depositing

The UWinnipeg Research Data Repository is a service of Borealis, the Canadian Dataverse Repository, and, as such, the Borealis Terms of Use applies to all users of the service.

Prior to depositing, please review Borealis Terms of Use

Standards for Deposit

Before depositing in the UWinnipeg Research Data Repository, depositors must make sure their dataset(s) meet the following standards:

1. Use consistent and comprehensible file names and file structures.

Following proper file naming conventions makes it easier to navigate and find specific files, and allows other researchers to understand and reuse your dataset.

  • Name files consistently
  • Keep files names short (< 25 characters) but meaningful
  • Do not use spaces to delimit words. Use capital letters, hyphens, or underscores
  • Apart from the permitted word-delimiters just noted, use only unaccented alphabetical characters, numerals, or a combination thereof.
  • Denote dates using ISO8601 standard: YYYY-MM-DD (e.g. 2019-01-10).

A well-structured file hierarchy will make it easier to locate and share your files. Recommended practices include:

  • Restricting the level of folders to a maximum of four deep
  • Limiting the number of items within each folder to ten

2. Deposit your files in preferred file formats to support preservation and reuse.

The use of preferred file formats are important to support the long-term preservation of your research data. Consult the following resource for a non-exhaustive list of preferred file formats:

If appropriate, files may be deposited in their original file format, in addition to a preferred format. If you have any questions about preferred file formats for your research data, contact the Research Data Management Librarian.

3. Describe your dataset with rich metadata to facilitate discovery.

Depositors must complete all required fields in the descriptive metadata. Depositors are strongly encouraged to complete geospatial metadata fields and subject-specific metadata fields, as appropriate.

Consult the following resource for guidance on the repository's metadata fields:

UWinnipeg Library may suggest changes to the descriptive metadata for the purposes of discovery, reuse, and preservation.

4. Include a ReadMe file to support correct interpretation and reuse of your dataset.

For research data to be read and interpreted correctly, it requires sufficient documentation. All deposited datasets must include a “ReadMe” file that includes the following information:

  • Details about dataset creation
  • Description of files contained in the dataset
  • Information about dataset completeness
  • Limitations on reuse

ReadMe files must conform to the following:

  • ReadMe files must be saved as a Unicode UTF-8 plain text file (.txt). Alternatively, ReadMe files may be saved in PDF/A format.
  • ReadMe files should use forced numbering in the filename (e.g. 00_ReadMe.txt) to make it appear at the top of the file overview.

Consult the following resource for a basic ReadMe file template:

Data Preservation

A librarian will review all deposited datasets for alignment with the Deposit Guidelines. In the case of non-compliance, the depositor will be asked to make necessary modifications. Once a librarian has approved your submission, you will be notified and the dataset will be published. All published datasets will receive a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) to allow your dataset to be cited.

All files deposited to the UWinnipeg Research Data Repository are held in cloud storage powered by the Ontario Library Research Cloud (OLRC), a distributed object storage network managed by Scholars Portal. Data will be replicated a minimum of 3 times across the OLRC’s 5 storage nodes located across Ontario.

UWinnipeg Library commits to preserving published datasets, through the Borealis service, for a period of at least ten years from the date of publication in the UWinnipeg Research Data Repository. UWinnipeg Library’s objective remains the continued access and preservation of deposited datasets for the longer term. To support this objective, UWinnipeg Library reserves the right to convert deposited files to any medium or format and make multiple copies for the purposes of security, back up, and preservation. UWinnipeg Library will only modify file contents and file formats to facilitate longterm access and use and with the consent of depositors.

Ten years following the deposit of a dataset to the UWinnipeg Research Data Repository, The UWinnipeg Library (via the RDM Librarian) will initiate a data preservation appraisal process. The depositor will be contacted as part of this process to discuss the future of their dataset. This may involve the development of a long-term preservation plan for their dataset, at the discretion of the researcher and any stakeholders referred to in the preservation plan (ex. University Archives).

Long-term data preservation plans may consist of details pertaining to:

  • Internal or external services (ex. University Archives, domain-specific archives, Archivematica-as-a-service, etc.)
  • Financial implications/obligations
  • Data curation/file format changes for further preservation
  • Access controls
  • Funder requirements.

Please note: UWinnipeg Library does not attempt to judge the scholarly quality of deposited datasets, and trusts the judgement and research expertise of those who created and deposited the Dataset. Thus, a determination of a dataset’s research quality is at the sole discretion of the Contact Person as named in descriptive metadata.

References

The requirements and guidance above have been adapted from several sources, including:

  • University of Victoria Libraries. Deposit Guidelines for UVic Dataverse. https://libguides.uvic.ca/ld.php?content_id=35154390
  • DataverseNO. DataverseNO Accession Policy. Version 2.1. https://site.uit.no/dataverseno/about/policyframework/accession-policy/
  • DataverseNO. Deposit Guidelines: Prepare Your Data. https://site.uit.no/dataverseno/deposit/prepare/
  • Scholars Portal. Scholars Portal Dataverse. https://learn.scholarsportal.info/all-guides/dataverse/
  • Scholars Portal. Scholars Portal Dataverse Account Terms of Use. https://learn.scholarsportal.info/allguides/dataverse/terms-of-use/
  • Texas Digital Libraries. Digital Preservation Policy. https://texasdigitallibrary.atlassian.net/wiki/spaces/TDRUD/pages/291635428/Digital+Preservation+Policy
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