Stewardship of digital research data - principles and guidelines

Added by Sarah on 30 March 2007

The framework is founded on the fundamental policy objective that ideas and knowledge, including data, derived from publicly-funded research should be made available for public use, interrogation, and scrutiny, as widely, rapidly and effectively as possible.

Research data are an increasingly important and expensive output of the scholarly research process, across all disciplines. They are an essential part of the evidence necessary to evaluate research results, and to reconstruct the events and processes leading to them. Their value increases as they are aggregated into collections and as they become more available for re-use to address new and challenging research questions. But we shall realise the value of data only if we move beyond research policies, practices and support systems developed in a different era. We need new approaches to managing and providing access to research data.

The framework is structured around five broad principles which provide a guide to the development of policy and practice for a range of key players: universities, research institutions, libraries and other information providers, publishers, and research funders as well as researchers themselves.

In seeking to develop the framework further, all parties need to work collaboratively and to ensure that it is sensitive to the needs of researchers and the different contexts in which they work. All parties must also take account of relevant technical and policy-making developments in the UK and overseas.

The guidelines and a briefing are available below.

Key developments


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